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Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation has licensed a novel method to 3D print highly resistant components for use in nuclear reactor designs. USNC Executive Vice President Kurt Terrani, formerly of ORNL, said the novel method will allow the company to make parts with desired complex shapes more efficiently. Credit: Carlos Jones/ORNL, U.S. Dept. of Energy

A novel method to 3D print components for nuclear reactors, developed by the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has been licensed by Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation.

The first central solenoid module arrived at the ITER site in St. Paul-lez-Durance, France on Sept. 9. Credit: ITER Organization

Staff at Oak Ridge National Laboratory organized transport for a powerful component that is critical to the world’s largest experiment, the international ITER project.

ORNL used novel additive manufacturing techniques to 3D print channel fasteners for Framatome’s boiling water reactor fuel assembly. Four components, like the one shown here, were installed at the TVA Browns Ferry nuclear plant. Credit: Framatome

Four first-of-a-kind 3D-printed fuel assembly brackets, produced at the Department of Energy’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, have been installed and are now under routine operating

David Kropaczek

David Kropaczek, director of the Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors, or CASL, at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has been named a fellow of the American Nuclear Society.

New virtual tours of ORNL facilities include the Building Technologies Research and Integration Center, shown in dollhouse view. Credit: ORNL, U.S. Dept. of Energy

ORNL has added 10 virtual tours to its campus map, each with multiple views to show floor plans, rotating dollhouse views and 360-degree navigation. As a user travels through a map, pop-out informational windows deliver facts, videos, graphics and links to other related content.

These fuel assembly brackets, manufactured by ORNL in partnership with Framatome and Tennessee Valley Authority, are the first 3D-printed safety-related components to be inserted into a nuclear power plant. Credit: Fred List/ORNL, U.S. Dept. of Energy

The Transformational Challenge Reactor, or TCR, a microreactor built using 3D printing and other new advanced technologies, could be operational by 2024.

An ORNL researcher holds a capsule of molten salt. Preliminary experiments seem to indicate that irradiation can slow corrosion of metal in liquid salt. Credit: ORNL, U.S. Dept. of Energy

Irradiation may slow corrosion of alloys in molten salt, a team of Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists has found in preliminary tests.

Fuel pellets sometimes degrade to a sandlike consistency and can disperse into the reactor core if a rod’s cladding bursts. ORNL researchers are studying how often this happens and what impact it has, in order to let reactors operate as long as possible without increasing risk.

A developing method to gauge the occurrence of a nuclear reactor anomaly has the potential to save millions of dollars.

VERA’s tools allow a virtual window inside the reactor core, down to a molecular level.

As CASL ends and transitions to VERA Users Group, ORNL looks at the history of the program and its impact on the nuclear industry.

 Using the ASGarD mathematical framework, scientists can model and visualize the electric fields, shown as arrows, circling around magnetic fields that are colorized to represent field magnitude of a fusion plasma. Credit: David Green/ORNL

Combining expertise in physics, applied math and computing, Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists are expanding the possibilities for simulating electromagnetic fields that underpin phenomena in materials design and telecommunications.