Deterministic Phonon Transport Predictions of Thermal Conductivity in Uranium Dioxide With Xenon Impurities

JR Harter and LD Oliveira and A Truszkowska and TS Palmer and PA Greaney, JOURNAL OF HEAT TRANSFER-TRANSACTIONS OF THE ASME, 140, 051301 (2018).

DOI: 10.1115/1.4038554

We present a method for solving the Boltzmann transport equation (BTE) for phonons by modifying the neutron transport code Rattlesnake which provides a numerically efficient method for solving the BTE in its self- adjoint angular flux (SAAF) form. Using this approach, we have computed the reduction in thermal conductivity of uranium dioxide (UO2) due to the presence of a nanoscale xenon bubble across a range of temperatures. For these simulations, the values of group velocity and phonon mean free path in the UO2 were determined from a combination of experimental heat conduction data and first principles calculations. The same properties for the Xe under the high pressure conditions in the nanoscale bubble were computed using classical molecular dynamics (MD). We compare our approach to the other modern phonon transport calculations, and discuss the benefits of this multiscale approach for thermal conductivity in nuclear fuels under irradiation.

Return to Publications page