Lead–Bismuth Eutectic (LBE): A Coolant Candidate for Gen. IV Advanced Nuclear Reactor Concepts



LBE is one of the primary coolant candidates of advanced nuclear reactors. The present review conducts an assessment of the coolant based on a series of liquid metal coolant selection criteria first and then identifies the key concerns of using LBE as the primary coolant of a nuclear reactor. The review focuses on the status of the art of these key concerns: materials degradation, protective oxide layer, and polonium production and control in an LBE coolant system. The review also addresses oxidation kinetics of steels in oxygen-containing LBE, development of oxygen technology and comparisons between LBE and liquid sodium.