Research > Program No. 1: Technological Experimental Circuits

Program No. 1: Technological Experimental Circuits

The objective of this research program is to build up large-scale experimental facilities allowing research and development in the area of generation IV nuclear reactors and in the field of fusion reaction. Experimental data acquired from such facilities will extend the existing knowledge of material properties and behaviour in specific conditions, and will be used during the development of the given type of reactor. Heat in such reactors is transferred through the media, but there is a lack of information on their behaviour, specifically in the area of their effects on the materials of construction, thermodynamic and thermohydraulic properties, manufacturing technologies are not known, the necessary components are not available, etc.

Experimental data acquired from such facilities extend the existing knowledge of the behaviour of materials and components at environmental parameters. Such data will be used to improve calculation codes, material property databases, etc., and is required for the development of the given reactor. Within this program, the following media will be studied:

  • Supercritical water; medium for the primary circuit of a supercritical water reactor (SCWR);
  • Helium; medium for the primary circuit of a (very) high-temperature reactor (V/HTR);
  • Helium; coolant for the first wall of a fusion reactor;
  • Supercritical carbon dioxide – potential medium of the secondary circuit for heat transfer from the primary circuit of GIV reactor;
  • Eutectic lead-lithium (Pb-Li) alloy – medium for continuous generation of fusion fuel –3H tritium.


Objectives of the TEO Program

Objective 1
Building the experimental loop for fuel qualification and sheathing for use in a supercritical water reactor. Loop licensing.

Objective 2
Verification of the function of emergency systems of the loop. Verification of the behaviour of fuel element including sheathing during stationary operation and during transient and emergency conditions.

Objective 3
Building the experimental loops with high-temperature Helium with the possibility of material testing for reactor internal components with co-acting Helium with high temperatures of up to1000°C, radiation and mechanical stress.

Objective 4
Verification of the characteristics of circulating compressor at a model scale on a high-temperature Helium loop. Verification of the function of gaseous Helium purification and analytical system, including kinetics of the removal of trace amount of corrosive impurities.

Objective 5
Building of experimental facility for hydrogen generation by high-temperature water electrolysis using high-temperature Helium and by heat recovery.

Objective 6
Verification of the function of the whole conversion cycle with SCO2; determination of the correlations for heat transfer in the supercritical area of CO2 at different cycle configurations (pressures, flow velocities, etc.).

Objective 7
Infrastructure construction to verify and develop remote handling procedures during erection and especially repairs and maintenance of the system with molten metal Pb-Li and to develop handling tools for hot cells in the ITER facility.

Objective 8
Building the experimental facility for cyclic stress induced by high heat flow and high-energy neutrons applied to samples of the primary first wall.

Objective 9
Research of the interactions between 14 MeV neutrons and materials for fusion applications.



Target groups of users of the outputs of the TEO program include designers of demonstration units of the selected types of generation IV reactors, associated in the Generation IV International Forum (GIF). They will receive the results in the form of research reports, functional models and on a scientific level, in the form of publications and presentations at special conferences and seminars. The results will contribute to the overall optimum concept of projects for the given nuclear power installations.

For outputs of fusion technologies, all results from testers and fusion reactor primary wall cooling equipment will be implemented in accordance with the basic requirements laid down by the development program of the ITER fusion energy system. Based on technical specifications of the relevant stages, the scientific results and the results of research applications will be used to design the European fusion reactor system with a parallel presentation in the technical press, and at international conferences and seminars. The main user of the results in question will be the consortium of EU and six other countries (USA, Russia, Japan, South Korea, India and China) known as the Fusion for Energy (F4E).