In the frame work of Severe Accident research, the spreading code THEMA, developed at CEA/DRN, aims at predicting the spreading extent of molten core after a vessel melt-through. The code solves fluid balance equations integrated over the fluid depth for oxidic and/or metallic phases under the shallow water assumption, using a finite difference scheme. Solidification is taken into account through crust formation on the substrate and at contact with the surroundings, as well as increase of fluid viscosity with solid fraction in the melt. A separate energy equation is solved for the solid substrate, including possible ablation. The assessment of THEMA code against the spreading experiments performed in the framework of the Corium Spreading and Coolability project of the European Union is presented. These experiments use either simulating materials at medium (RIT), or at high temperature (KATS), or corium (VULCANO, FARO), conducted at different mass flow rates and with large or low solidification interval. THEMA appears to be able to simulate the whole set of the experiments investigated. Comparison between experimental and computed spreading lengths and substrate temperatures are quite satisfactory. The results show a rather a rather large sensitivity at mass flow rate and inlet temperature, indicating that, generally, efforts should be made to improve the accuracy of the measurements of such parameters in the experiments.
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