Coupling of the neutron diffusion code SKETCH-N and the thermal-hydraulics system code ATHLET for VVER-1000 calculations

Koppány Pázmán, Vyacheslav Gennadevich Zimin, Sergey Pavlovich Nikonov

28th Symposium of AER on VVER Reactor Physics and Reactor Safety (2018, Olomouc, Czechia)
Reactor physics experiments and code validation (benchmarks)


This article presents a newly developed coupling between the ATHLET and SKETCH-N computer codes. Firstly the SKETCH-N neutron diffusion code and the ATHLET thermal-hydraulic system code are described. After that the coupling scheme and the coupling program is introduced. The coupling was tested on a VVER-1000 fuel pin cell model. This calculation showed that the coupling is functional. Then the coupling program was applied to calculate the steady-state condition described in the Kalinin-3 VVER-1000 benchmark. The SKETCH-N – ATHLET results were compared to experimental data provided in the benchmark description and to results calculated by SKETCH-N – SKAZKA. SKAZKA is a core thermal-hydraulic module which is coupled with SKETCH-N and was previously verified for VVER-1000 core calculations. The newly calculated results show good agreement with the experimental data and their accuracy is at least as good as the accuracy of the SKETCH-N – SKAZKA calculations. The comparison was made for 2D assembly-wise power density distribution and for 3D power density distribution in the fuel assemblies.

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