Masters Theses

Keywords and Phrases

Finite Element Method; Reactor Analysis


"This study presents the development and Monte Carlo validation of a continuous Galerkin finite element reactor analysis framework. In its current state, the framework acts as an interface between the mesh preparation software GMSH and the sparse linear solvers in MATLAB, for the discretization and approximation of 1-D, 2-D, and 3-D linear partial differential equations. Validity of the framework is assessed from the following two benchmarking activities: the 2-D IAEA PWR benchmark; and the 2-D Missouri Science and Technology Reactor benchmark proposed within this study. The 2-D IAEA PWR multi-group diffusion benchmark is conducted with the following discretization schemes: linear, quadratic, and cubic triangular elements; linear and quadratic rectangular elements of mesh sizes 10, 5, 2, 1, 0.5 cm. Convergence to the reference criticality eigenvalue of 1.02985 is observed for all cases.

The proposed 2-D MSTR benchmark is prepared through translation of an experimentally validated 120w core configuration MCNP model into Serpent 2. Validation of the Serpent 2 model is attained from the comparison of criticality eigenvalues, flux traverses, and two 70-group energy spectrums within fuel elements D5 and D9. Then, a two-group 2-D MSTR benchmark of the 120w core configuration is prepared with the spatial homogenization methodology implemented within Serpent 2. Final validation of the framework is assessed from the comparison of criticality eigenvalues and spatial flux solutions of the diffusion and simplified spherical harmonics SP3 models. The diffusion model resulted in a difference in reactivity of Δρ =-1673.93 pcm and the SP3 model resulted in a difference of Δρ = -777.60 pcm with respect to the Serpent 2 criticality eigenvalues"--Abstract, page iii.


Alajo, Ayodeji Babatunde

Committee Member(s)

Liu, Xin (Mining & Nuclear Engr)
Mueller, Gary Edward, 1954-


Mining and Nuclear Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Nuclear Engineering


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Spring 2018


x, 159 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographic references (pages 154-158).


© 2018 Wayne J. Brewster, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

File Type




Thesis Number

T 11270

Electronic OCLC #