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Proceedings Paper

Distributed strain and temperature mapping in the Safe Affordable Fission Engine (SAFE-100) thermal simulator using fiber Bragg gratings
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Paper Abstract

The motivation for the reported research was to support NASA space nuclear power initiatives through the development of advanced fiber Bragg grating (FBG) sensors for the SAFE-100 non-nuclear core simulator. The purpose of the combined temperature and strain mapping was to obtain a correlation between power distribution and core shape within the simulator. In a nuclear reactor, core dimension affects local reactivity and therefore power distribution. 20 FBG temperature sensors were installed in the SAFE-100 thermal simulator at the NASA Marshal Space Flight Center in an interstitial location approximately 2.3mm in diameter. The simulator was heated during two separate experiments using graphite resistive heating elements. The first experiment reached a maximum temperature of approximately 800°C, while the second experiment reached 1150°C. A detailed profile of temperature vs. time and location within the simulator was generated. During a second test, highly distributed fiber Bragg grating strain sensors were arrayed about the circumference and along the length of the heated core region. The maximum temperature during this test was approximately 300°C. A radial and longitudinal strain distribution was obtained that correlated well with known power distribution. Work continues to increase the strain sensor operating temperature and sensor multiplexing to allow high-resolution mapping.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 July 2004
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 5388, Smart Structures and Materials 2004: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, (29 July 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.540336
Show Author Affiliations
Kelly L. Stinson-Bagby, Luna Innovations, Inc. (United States)
Robert S. Fielder, Luna Innovations, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5388:
Smart Structures and Materials 2004: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies
Eric H. Anderson, Editor(s)

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