The focus of nuclear fuel design and maintenance has been shifting from a primarily empirical endeavor to the use of highly advanced simulations with experiment-based validation and uncertainty quantification. For the Office of Nuclear Energy (NE) to address the nation’s energy needs, assessment of the Predictive Maturity of these simulation models is essential. Herein, Predictive Maturity refers to the degree of confidence that decision-makers can place in a simulation. For a program governed by advanced simulation tools to be successful, the development of procedures that quantify the Predictive Maturity of multi-scale multi-physics nuclear reactor simulations must supplement NE’s code development and experimental efforts.
This project proposes to provide a Predictive Maturity Framework with its companion metrics that (1) introduce a formalized, quantitative means to communicate information between interested parties, (2) provide scientifically dependable means to claim completion of Validation and Uncertainty Quantification (VU) activities, and (3) guide the decision makers in the allocation of NE’s resources for code development and physical experiments.