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ORNL-4396

MOLTEN-SALT REACTOR PROGRAM

SEMIANNUAL PROGRESS REPORT

For Period Ending February 28, 1969

INTRODUCTIONxi

SUMMARYxiii

PART 1. MOLTEN-SALT REACTOR EXPERIMENT

1. MSRE OPERATIONS1

1.1 Chronological Account of Operations and Maintenance1

1.2 233U Zero-Power Tests5

1.2.1 Critical Experiment5

1.2.2 Control Rod Calibration7

1.2.3 Temperature Coefficient of Reactivity8

1.2.4 Concentration Coefficient of Reactivity9

1.3 Operations Analysis9

1.3.1 System Dynamics9

1.3.2 Gas in the Fuel Salt11

1.3.3 Neutron and Pressure Noise Measurements16

1.3.4 Perturbations in Nuclear Power16

1.3.5 Salt Transfer to Overflow Tank21

1.3.6 Thermal-Convection Heat-Removal Test22

1.3.7 Radiation Heating23

1.3.8 Thermal Cycle History23

1.4 Equipment24

1.4.1 233U Loading Equipment24

1.4.2 Salt Samplers25

1.4.3 Control Rods and Drives26

1.4.4 Off-Gas System27

1.4.5 Component Cooling System28

1.4.6 Containment and Ventilation28

1.4.7 Electrical System28

1.4.8 Heaters29

1.4.9 Other29

2. COMPONENT DEVELOPMENT30

2.1 Freeze-Flange Thermal-Cycle Test30

2.2 Pumps31

2.2.1 Mark 2 Fuel Pump31

2.2.2 Oil Pump Endurance Test32

3. INSTRUMENTATION AND CONTROLS33

3.1 MSRE Operating Experience33

3.2 Controls System Design33

3.3 MSRE Computer System33

4. MSRE REACTOR ANALYSIS35

4.1 Long-Term Isotopic Changes and Reactivity Effects During Operation with 233U35

4.2 Analysis of Zero Power Rod-Calibration Experiments37

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