BISON: A Flexible Code for Advanced Simulation of the Performance of Multiple Nuclear Fuel Forms

Richard L. Williamson, Jason D. Hales, Stephen R. Novascone, Giovanni Pastore, Kyle A. Gamble, Benjamin W. Spencer, Wen Jiang, Stephanie A. Pitts, Albert Casagranda, Daniel Schwen, Adam X. Zabriskie, Aysenur Toptan, Russell Gardner, Christoper Matthews, Wenfeng Liu, Hailong Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


BISON is a nuclear fuel performance application built using the Multiphysics Object-Oriented Simulation Environment (MOOSE) finite element library. One of its major goals is to have a great amount of flexibility in how it is used, including in the types of fuel it can analyze, the geometry of the fuel being modeled, the modeling approach employed, and the dimensionality and size of the models. Fuel forms that can be modeled include standard light water reactor fuel, emerging light water reactor fuels, tri-structural isotropic fuel particles, and metallic fuels. BISON is a platform for research in nuclear fuel performance modeling while simultaneously serving as a tool for the analysis of nuclear fuel designs. Recent research in BISON includes techniques such as the extended finite element method for fuel cracking, exploration of high-burnup light water reactor fuel behavior, swelling behavior of metallic fuels, and central void formation in mixed-oxide fuel. BISON includes integrated documentation for each of its capabilities, follows rigorous software quality assurance procedures, and has a growing set of rigorous verification and validation tests.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)954-980
Number of pages27
JournalNuclear Technology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by DOE under the Nuclear Energy Advanced Modeling and Simulation and the Consortium for the Advanced Simulation of Light Water Reactors programs. The submitted manuscript has been authored by a contractor of the U.S. government under contract DE-AC07-05ID14517. Accordingly, the U.S. government retains a nonexclusive, royalty-free license to publish or reproduce the published form of this contribution, or allow others to do so, for U.S. government purposes.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Finite element

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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