Error estimation of values obtained from practical CFD analysis

Ken Uchida, Shinichiro Kawamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In recent years, it has become common to analyze the detailed, three-dimensional flow features in reactor pressure vessels of boiling water reactors (BWRs) by computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis. However, there are few reports on practical examples of estimation or on estimation methodologies of the uncertainties in multi-dimensional CFD analysis. In this paper, to estimate the errors of values obtained from practical CFD analysis of a complex flow field, we propose a quantitative methodology that adopts the numerical analysis errors of “elementary phenomena” as error factors for sensitivity analyses, as well as, for instance, dimensional tolerances or errors of input values. Using this methodology with CSAU methodology, we showed a practical simplified example of error estimation regarding calculated water surface drop along the radial direction obtained from CFD analysis of the hydraulic gradient formed in the reactor pressure vessel of a BWR. We show the validity of the methodology by comparing this “estimated error” with a “reference error” evaluated by comparing numerical and experimental results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)625-633
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Nuclear Science and Technology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Jul
Externally publishedYes


  • CFD
  • Complex flow field
  • Elementary phenomenon
  • Error estimation
  • Feed water sparger
  • Hydraulic gradient
  • Numerical analysis error
  • Opposed jet
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Separator
  • Tube banks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


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