Large Scale Containment Facility

CNL’s Large Scale Containment Facility (LSCF), located at its Chalk River Laboratories, has a total volume of ~1,575 m3, with a room height of 10 meters, and is designed for studying buoyancy-driven gas mixing behaviour with steam condensation on concrete walls and heat exchangers. It is also used to study the behaviour of wet aerosols: agglomeration, settling, impingement and leakage out of containment.

The LSCF is instrumented to measure temperatures (gas, wall surfaces, through wall temperature profile), heat fluxes to walls, relative humidity, helium concentration, gas velocity, aerosol (droplet) size distribution, aerosol velocity, and condensation rates. The experiments performed in the LSCF are used in the validation of the containment thermalhydraulics code (GOTHIC) and the fission-product transport/release code (SMART), which are used throughout the CANDU® industry. The aerosol behaviour experiments are also used to generate data used by safety analysts in defining input parameters for aerosol behaviour modelling in SMART.

The facility consists of a thick-walled concrete room, a separate control room, and associated auxiliary rooms. The 10 metre high concrete room is divided into two non-pressured compartments. The larger room has a volume of around 1,300 m3 and is capable of withstanding 100 per cent relative humidity and 65ºC conditions. The smaller room has a volume of around 275 m3 and can withstand 100 per cent relative humidity and 95ºC conditions. These two rooms are separated by insulated steel-studded, plastic-sheathed walls.

The Large Scale Containment Facility is interested in partnership with companies and / or universities involved in the hydrogen industry who are concerned with identifying and addressing hydrogen safety concerns. CNL also has a Large-Scale Vented Combustion Test Facility (LSVCTF) located at the Whiteshell Laboratories in Pinawa, Manitoba. The LSVCTF is used to perform both hydrogen combustion and passive autocatalytic recombiner tests, which mixes hydrogen and oxygen into steam.