Clean Technology 2010

Fusion Fission Hybrid Reactor using IEC Fusion Driver Technology to enable High Support Ratio Systems

G.H. Miley, H. Leon, H. Momota, H. Hora, P.J. Shrestha
University of Illinois, US

Keywords: fusion-fission Hydrid, actnide burner, fusion driver, subcrical reactor safety


An accelerator-driven sub-critical reactor potentially offers important safety advantages for future fission power systems. This type of system also offers very high support ratios (light water reactor/breeder or burner) for use as a fuel breeder or as a waste burner. A fast neutron spectrum sub-critical reactor system with heavy metal coolant has received considerable attention in Europe and in the US and Japan. Alternate versions, using intermediate or thermal spectrum neutronics with lighter moderators are also possible. Another attractive application of a driven reactor is for burning of plutonium isotopes, actinides and select long-lived fission products. Here we propose and describe a novel new system using small cylindrical inertial electrostatic confinement (IEC) fusion drivers embedded in fuel element positions in the fission reactor. This allows a very attractive and compact reactor design for both breeders and actinide burners. In addition to large power reactors, special low power designs are candidates for student subcritical laboratory experiments and research reactors. The driven system is especially beneficial since the enhanced safety allows a wider variety of experimental conditions, including dynamic studies.
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