Heat-absorbing capacity of high-heat-flux components in nuclear fusion reactors

Namkyu Lee, Beom Seok Kim, Hokyu Moon, Joon Soo Lim, Hyung Hee Cho

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Nuclear fusion energy is a solution to the substitution of fossil fuels and the global energy deficit. However, among the several problems encountered for realizing a nuclear fusion reactor, the divertor presents difficulties due to the tremendous heat flux (~10 MW/m2) from high-temperature plasma. Also, neutrons produce additional heat (~17.5 MW/m3) from collisions with the materials’ atoms. This may lead to unexpected effects such as thermal failure. Thus, a comprehensive investigation on the divertor module is needed to determine the heat-absorbing capacity of the divertor module so to maintain the effect of incident heat flux. In this study, using an analytical approach and a simulation, the quantitative effect of heat generation on the thermophysical behavior, such as temperature and thermal stress, was analyzed while maintaining the incident heat flux. Then, a correlated equation was derived from the thermal design criteria, namely, the maximum thimble temperature and the safety factor at the vulnerable point. Finally, on the basis of the thermal design criteria, the heat-absorbing capacity of a nuclear fusion reactor in operating conditions was determined. This study contributes to the understanding of the divertor’s effects in nuclear fusion reactors for high-heat-flux and high-temperature applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number771
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Oct 3

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by the Human Resources Development program (No. 20174030201720) of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP) grant funded by the Korea government Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Building and Construction
  • Fuel Technology
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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