Modelling of a multi-cycle full-core PWR depletion benchmark

SCK•CEN Mentor

Fiorito Luca,, +32 (0)14 33 21 86

Expert group

Nuclear Systems Physics

SCK•CEN Co-mentor

Hernandez Solis Augusto , , +32 (0)14 33 21 87


Advances in parallel computing have made possible the development of high-fidelity tools for the design and analysis of nuclear reactor cores, and such tools require extensive verification and validation. Within this framework, the student is requested to produce a model of the BEAVRS benchmark using the nuclear codes and data for neutronics analysis employed at SCK CEN. BEAVRS is a multi-cycle full-core Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) depletion benchmark based on two operational cycles of a commercial nuclear power plant that provides a detailed description of fuel assemblies, burnable absorbers, in-core fission detectors, core loading patterns, and numerous in-vessel components. This benchmark enables analysts to develop extremely detailed reactor core models that can be used for testing and validation of coupled neutron transport, thermal-hydraulics, and fuel isotopic depletion. The benchmark also provides measured reactor data for Hot Zero Power (HZP) physics tests, boron let-down curves, and three-dimensional in-core flux maps from fifty-eight instrumented assemblies. It should be noted however, that not all the necessary data are presented in this document. It will be necessary for analysts to make appropriate judgements and assumptions depending on methods employed.


This project envisages a four to six month-workload where the following tasks must be achieved:

  • acquire the Monte Carlo transport code Serpent
  • model the BEAVRS benchmark according to specifications
  • evaluation of parameter of interest
  • possible connection with other SCK CEN activities
  • production of scientific outputs (article, report, conference presentation, ...)

The minimum diploma level of the candidate needs to be

Academic bachelor

The candidate needs to have a background in

Physics , Other , Nuclear engineering

Estimated duration

4/6 months