NPRE PhD student gains ORNL recognition for nuclear modeling, uncertainty quantification work
A study at Oak Ridge National Laboratory to better define uncertainties in nuclear systems modeling has gained recognition for Nuclear, Plasma, and Radiological Engineering PhD student Majdi Radaideh.
Radaideh, a student of NPRE Associate Prof. Tomasz Kozlowski, won third place in the ORNL Nuclear Engineering Science Laboratory Synthesis Program 2017 Student Poster competition.
“We are developing an approach for Light Water Reactor systems to quantify the uncertainties in kinetic parameters so that we can use them in safety analysis for nuclear reactors,” Radaideh said.
“The kinetic parameters describe the behavior of specific type of neutrons in the core – called delayed neutrons – that are very important for nuclear reactor control. Previously, people just used these kinetic parameters to describe the delayed neutrons as a point estimate, without any consideration of uncertainties of these parameters,” Radaideh explained.
“Now, when we use these parameters plus their uncertainties, we can figure out how the reactor responses would be changed when considering those uncertainties. We have a clearer model of how the delayed neutrons behave and knowing that, can better control the nuclear reactor.”
Radaideh has used ORNL supercomputers and SCALE, a comprehensive modeling and simulation suite for nuclear safety analysis, to perform his calculations. He has worked with Dr. Will Wieselquist, an ORNL staff member and major SCALE developer. The next step in the work, according to Radaideh, is to report the kinetic parameters with their uncertainties for various types of nuclear systems and make them available for applications in industry and academia.
Radaideh earned a bachelor’s degree from the Jordan University of Science & Technology before coming to Illinois in Fall 2015. Working on computational thermal hydraulics and safety analysis, he earned a master’s degree in Fall 2016 in NPRE, and has concentrated on uncertainty quantification for high dimensional problems for his PhD work.