RA-8 is an open pool, non-power reactor that only generates 10 watts of thermal power, with a maximum of 100 W when fully operational. With such a low heat production, there is no need for having a complex coolant system in place. The weak pool water convection suffices to cool the core.
RA-8 reactor in Argentina
The RA8 reactor was designed and built by INVAP for the National Atomic Energy Commission (CNEA) in 1997.
This type of low power reactor usually has a short operating life because it is decommissioned once it fulfills its purpose. Although similar in form to the pool research reactors, the RA8 differs in that it aims at verifying the quality of the fuel assembly design and of the core design in a real-scale physical model.