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Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (United Stated of America)

The Thermal-Hydraulics Research Laboratory at Texas A&M University has developed state-of-the-art experimental measurement techniques and computational tools, and is currently engaged in several national and international research activities to support the advancement of the nuclear industry. The laboratory includes approximately 20,000 square feet dedicated to experimental use, and office spaces for modelling and simulations. The laboratory satisfies technical requirements, and high quality and safety standards. Qualified personnel direct the research activity in compliance with Quality Assurance and safety requirements. The laboratory is equipped with two machine shops, single and three-phase, high and low voltage power supplies, di-water systems, and compressed gases.

The laboratory is specialized in high-fidelity measurements of single and multi-phase flow using advanced techniques:

  • Time-Resolved Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) and Laser-Induced Fluorescence (TR-LIF) are used for high-resolution measurements of velocity and temperature fields. The techniques combine high-speed, high-resolution cameras (monochrome and colour, up to 120,000 fps), and high power and repetition lasers.
  • Advanced instrumentation and technique for pressure, temperature and density measurements
  • Pressure and Temperature Sensitive Paint.
  • Background Oriented Schlieren (BOS) system
  • The Distrubuted Temperature Sensor (DTS) system LUNA, using optical fiber system to measure temperature distributions in different enviroments.

The laboratory host advanced exprimental facilities that are currently used within the framework of national and international collaborative projects, including:

  • A transparent 61-pin wire wrapped fuel assembly, producing high resolution velocity and pressure measurements in exterior and interior subchannales, supporting the developemnt of liquid metal fast reactors.
  • Helical Coil steam generator test sections to support research on Small Modular reactors and other advanced reactors
  • Multiple LWR fuel bundles, including the high pressure high temperature CHF test bundle.

The laboratory has contirbuted to the development of advanced system level and cimputational fluid dynamic codes, and participated to national and international benchmark exercises. The laboratory has current lincenses for a wide selection of system codes and CFD codes, ans well as advnaced computational capabilities:

Star-CCM+ computational software, and the NEK-5000 computational codes are currently available and installed in the High Performance Computing (HPC) clusters at TAMU. The TAMU High Performance Research Computing (HPRC) group features high performance computers that will be accessed for the entire duration of the project. The group currently administers three HPC clusters totaling 773 TF in peak performance with 11 PB of high-performance storage:

Terra is a 304-node heterogeneous Intel Broadwell cluster from Lenovo (28 cores per node) with an Omni-Path Architecture (OPA) interconnect and 48 NVIDIA K80 dual-GPU accelerators.

Ada is a 874-node hybrid cluster from IBM/Lenovo with Intel Ivy Bridge processors and a Mellanox FDR-10 Infiniband interconnect. It includes 68 NVIDIA K20 GPUs supporting applications already ported to GPUs, and 24 Intel Xeon Phi 5110P co-processors supporting applications benefiting from Knights Corner Phi cards.

Lonestar 5 is the latest in a series of Lonestar clusters, jointly funded by the University of Texas System, Texas A&M University and Texas Tech University.

Contact persons

Yassin Hassan

Rodolfo Vaghetto

Thien Nguyen

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