Laboratory for Thermal-HydraulicsWelcome to LTH
The Laboratory for Thermal-Hydraulics (LTH) forms part of PSI's Nuclear Energy and Safety Research Division (NES) and is engaged in both analytical and experimental research and development (R&D) related to the normal operation, design basis accident (DBA), beyond design basis accident (BDBA) and severe accident (SA) conditions of current and future nuclear power plants.
The rationale for the pursued activities is threefold:
- to offer R&D support to the Swiss utilities, nuclear safety authority and industry
- to conduct research with national and international collaborations aimed at strengthening the reactor safety associated with the accidents
- translate research results into services and new products for back fitting to improve safety.
Current News from LTH
In most cases, electricity is generated when water is heated and transformed into vapour. Vapour bubbles in the water play a decisive role in this process. Using computer simulation, researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute have succeeded in representing the behaviour of vapour bubbles – and in making their performance more calculable.
Researcher at PSI (NES/LTH) have brought modern infrared technologies into their large thermal-hydraulic facility, called LINX, to obtain insights into condensation/evaporation process occurring under thermodynamic conditions resembling those of a nuclear power plant containment during a severe accident scenario. In such a scenario, condensation is of prime importance to control the thermodynamic state of the containment. It affects the pressure history, the overall gas (steam, hydrogen) and fission product distribution within this last barrier. Better understanding of these phenomena under accident conditions is essential to properly predict the accident evolution.