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VERA Workshop and Users' Group Training

The Consortium for Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors (CASL) is developing and deploying the Virtual Environment for Reactor Applications (VERA) as part of its ten-year mission to provide state-of-the-art software and methods for the U.S. commercial nuclear industry. VERA contains advanced capabilities for neutronics, thermal-hydraulics, fuel mechanics, and CRUD/chemistry for simulation of commercial PWRs. Many of the VERA tools are fully coupled for high-fidelity rod-wise local feedback and automated data transfer between tools, while a single simplified user interface provides a common data source for all the methods. As part of CASL’s validation plan, VERA has been benchmarked against measured data from many operating reactors and experiments.

The VERA tools leverage existing capabilities in SCALE, including use of multi-group cross section data processed with AMPX, isotopic depletion, decay, and activation with ORIGEN, and excore neutron transport capability provided by Shift with the same continuous-energy data used by KENO-VI.  Additional capabilities in VERA that are not available in SCALE are 3-dimensional (3-D) deterministic neutron transport with MPACT, two-phase sub-channel thermal-hydraulics with CTF (or COBRA-TF), and the BISON fuel rod performance code. In many cases, the capabilities developed by CASL have been verified against existing SCALE codes such as Polaris and KENO-VI.

This course will first provide a two-day VERA Workshop which will provide lectures and demonstrations of each of the VERA tools and their coupling. The first day of this workshop will focus on commercial PWR capabilities, and the second day will focus on recent developments for advanced reactors (such as MSRs).  The last three days of this course will be hands-on training on use of VERA on a high-performance computing (HPC) platform.  Due to the computing requirements of VERA tools, seating for this training will be limited, with priority given to members of the VERA Users Group.

No prior knowledge of VERA or SCALE will be required. There is no registration fee for this course. The workshop during the first two days is open to all participants, with or without a VERA license. The last three days of the training course is open only to VERA licensed users who are members of the VERA Users’ Group. For information on VERA licensing or on how to become members of the VERA Users’ Group, participants should email Andrew Godfrey at or Mehdi Asgari at