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Passive System Reliability Analysis: A Study on the Isolation Condenser

Luciano Burgazzi

Nuclear Technology

Volume 139 / Number 1 / July 2002 / Pages 3-9


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This paper deals with the reliability assessment of passive systems that have been developed in recent years by suppliers, industries, utilities, and research organizations, aimed at plant safety improvement and substantial simplification in its implementation. The present study concerns the passive decay heat removal systems that use, for the most part, a condenser immersed in a cooling pool. The focus of the paper is a reliability study of the isolation condenser system foreseen for advanced boiling water reactors (BWRs) for the removal of the excess sensible and core decay heat from the BWR by natural circulation. Furthermore, an approach aimed at the thermal-hydraulic performance assessment (i.e., the natural circulation failure evaluation) from the probability point of view is given. The study is not plant-specific-related but pertains to the conceptual design of the foregoing system.

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