The High Flux Reactor (HFR) at Petten

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View into the HFR The High Flux Reactor (HFR) at Petten is owned by the Institute for Energy (IE) of the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission (EC). Its operation has been entrusted since 1962 to the Netherlands Energy Research Foundation Nuclear Research and consultancy Group (NRG). Since February 2005, NRG became also the license holder of the HFR. Together with the hot cells of NRG at the Petten site, the HFR has provided for over four decades, an integral and full complement of irradiation and post-irradiation examination services as required by current and future R&D for nuclear energy, industry and research organisations. Since 1963, the HFR has a recognized record of consistency, reliability and high availability with more than 280 days of operation per year. The HFR operates at a constant power of 45 MW. The HFR is a tank in pool type reactor which has 20 in-core and 12 poolside irradiation positions, plus 12 horizontal beam tubes.

The current irradiation programmes at the HFR address areas in:

Horizontal cross section of the core of the HFR showing the fast and thermal flux values. The numbers 0-6 marked inside the fuel and control elements show the typical number of reactor cycles, which an element has been irradiated when it is placed in that position.In 2006, the conversion of the HFR from using highly-enriched uranium (UAlx) fuel to low-enriched uranium (U3Si2) fuel has been completed. The Dutch government issued a new nuclear energy licence for the reactor in February 2005, including the use of LEU fuel. The operation of the HFR will continue until at least 2015. The reactor has a total of 33 fuel rods and six control rods. The HFR cycle length is 31.5 days with 28 full power days. The annual number of cycles is 10. In figure 2 calculated neutron flux values are given. These are the average values over the 60 cm height of the core.


More detailed information on the HFR can be found on:



Revision : 2008
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