Simultaneous development of liquid sodium flow and temperature fields in the heat generating pin bundles of reactor has been investigated. Development characteristics are seen to be strongly influenced by pin diameter, number of pins, helical wire-wrap, ligament gap between the last row of pins and hexcan wall and Reynolds number. Flow development is achieved within an axial length of ∼125 hydraulic diameters, for all the pin bundle configurations considered. But temperature development is attained only if the pin diameter is small or the number of pins is less. In the case of large pin diameter with more pins, temperature development could not be achieved even after a length of ∼1000 hydraulic diameters. The reason for this behavior is traced to be the weak communication among sub-channels in tightly packed bundles. It is seen that the pin Nusselt number decreases from center to periphery in a bundle. Also, if the ligament gap is narrow, the Nusselt number is large and more uniform. Flow development length is short if the Reynolds number is large and the converse is true for thermal development length. Helical wire-wrap shortens the thermal entry length and significantly enhances the global Nusselt number. But, its influence on hydrodynamic entry length is not significant. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.