Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation


On the Flow-Induced Vibration of Solitary Wire-Wrapped Cylinders in Axial Flow Public Deposited

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  • Vibration of nuclear power plant components can cause fretting wear and fatigue that can eventually lead to component failure. Flexible, high-aspect ratio components under flow, such as the wire-wrapped cylindrical fuel elements in a liquid metal-cooled fast reactor (LMFR) core, are particularly susceptible to vibration due to their low natural frequencies. The flow-induced vibrations experienced by such components tend to be random and of low-amplitude and frequency, however, at critical flow velocities these components can experience self-excited, fluid-elastic instabilities that can lead to immediate failure. Such failures of critical reactor components, particularly those that act as fission product barriers, can lead to prolonged shutdowns of nuclear power plants and even their permanent closure. Thus, both a better understanding of the vibration response of wire-wrapped cylinders in axial flow and the ability to experimentally measure the vibration of individual pins during hydraulic validation tests are needed. This study accomplishes this in three parts. First, it details the development of a theoretical model that incorporates the effects of a helical wire-wrap along a cylinder to understand its impact on the dynamic response of the cylinder under flow. Second, it presents the development and validation of a new measurement technique to quantify the dynamic response of a cylinder under the conditions and within the geometric constraints present in a LMFR fuel assembly flow-induced vibration test. Third, it compares the theoretical model against experimental vibration data of varying geometries of solitary wire-wrapped cylinders in confined axial flow. The results of this study provide a new method to experimentally measure the dynamic response of a cylinder and an improved knowledge of how a helical wire wrap can affect the dynamic response of a cylinder under flow.
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  • This work was supported by TerraPower under contract VC1050.
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