December 11, 2020
(Friday, 10:30-11:30 am)
Since the beginning of nuclear technology research reactor have been playing an important role in developing nuclear technology, performing research as well as technical expertise in many countries all over the world. In the last decades it has been a common perception that research reactors are not needed anymore leading to significant decrease in number of operating reactors and aging of operating ones. However due to continuation of utilization as well as development of nuclear technologies for the benefit of mankind, the need for research reactors still exists and is even increasing.
Firstly a short overview of research reactor utilization will be made. This will be followed by numerous examples of activities to support advanced nuclear technologies at the Jozef Stefan Institute TRIGA Mark II reactor. Since first criticality in 1966 the 250 kW TRIGA Mark II research reactor has been playing important role in developing nuclear technology and safety culture in Slovenia. The reactor has been mainly used for training and education, research and isotope production. In the recent years the research focus has moved from beam experiments to radiation hardness testing, benchmark experiments for validation of computer codes and nuclear data, testing of nuclear instrumentation in a well characterized environment, irradiation with high energy gamma rays etc. Practically all experimental equipment is later used for education and training. Hence JSI TRIGA is equipped with some of the most advanced practical exercises, such as spatially dependent void reactivity coefficient, in-core flux mapping, pulse experiment, water activation and similar.
Recent and current experimental programs performed with various nuclear instrumentation in the JSI TRIGA reactor have improved its measurements capacity and its intrinsic physical parameters and uncertainties (kinetic parameters, spatial flux and reaction rate distributions, power level...). Completed with a fully validated calculation scheme, these experimental data a set allows considering this small and relatively old research reactor, having rather low neutron flux (~1012 n/cm2s), even nowadays, able to efficiently support advancement nuclear reactor technologies.
Dr. Luka Snoj received the Diploma and PhD thesis in Physics from the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2005 and 2009, respectively. In 2010, he was on 6 months postdoctoral position at Culham centre for Fusion Energy, where he was charge of neutron transport calculations to support JET neutron yield calibration.
In 2010 has been appointed head of TRIGA reactor at the Jozef Stefan Institute (JSI). Since 2014 he has been Head of Reactor Physics division at the Jozef Stefan Institute. He is very active in teaching; reactor and radiation physics, experimental reactor physics at the Faculty of mathematics and physics, University of Ljubljana where in 2019 he was elected associate professor. He has been advisor to 10 master and 2 PhD, and is advisor to 4 PhD students.
His research interest is mainly theoretical reactor physics related to practical applications in power and research reactors, in particular: Monte Carlo transport of neutrons and photons in fission and fusion nuclear reactors, integral reactor experiments, criticality experiments and calculations. He regularly performs evaluations and evaluation reviews of critical and reactor physics experiments for International Criticality Safety Benchmark Evaluation Project (ICSBEP) and International Reactor Physics Experiment Evaluation (IRPhE) Project working groups under OECD/NEA. Since 2009 he has been directly involved in many international experimental campaigns in which he provided calculations support. That is calibration of neutron monitors to DD and DT neutrons at the Joint European Torus in Culham, UK and many reaction rate and physical parameter measurements at the JSI TRIGA reactor.
He is author of more than 50 SCI papers, 10 chapters in monographs and has more than 400 citations. He has been project leader of many domestic and international projects for governmental agencies, EU and domestic as well as domestic and international industrial partners.