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Human Factors, Instrumentation & Controls
Improving task performance, system reliability, system and personnel safety, efficiency, and effectiveness are the division's main objectives. Its major areas of interest include task design, procedures, training, instrument and control layout and placement, stress control, anthropometrics, psychological input, and motivation.
2020 Winter Meeting and Nuclear Technology Expo
November 15–19, 2020
Chicago, IL|Chicago Marriott Downtown
The Standards Committee is responsible for the development and maintenance of voluntary consensus standards that address the design, analysis, and operation of components, systems, and facilities related to the application of nuclear science and technology. Find out What’s New, check out the Standards Store, or Get Involved today!
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The CORTEX project: Improving nuclear fleet operational availability
We often define noise as an unwanted disturbance, especially acoustic in nature. Neutron noise, by contrast, is a direct measure of the dynamics of a nuclear core. It can be used for core monitoring without disturbing plant operation and by using the existing core instrumentation. The European CORTEX project aims to develop an innovative core monitoring technique using neutron noise, while capitalizing on the latest developments in neutronic modeling, signal processing, and artificial intelligence.
Challenge: Accelerate utilization of simulation and experimentation.
How: Integrate experimentation and simulation to enable the development of first principles predictive simulation capabilities that are necessary to transition nuclear energy system design and licensing from reliance on experiments to reliance on modeling and simulation.
Background: In the past half century, the nuclear energy industry and regulatory agency approach to nuclear system design and licensing has relied significantly on experimental testing. This conventional paradigm embraces conservative design principles and has ensured nuclear safety, but at the cost of extensive experiments required by the current licensing process to validate modeling and simulation tools currently in use for core design. Additionally, the lengthy and complex software quality assurance process required by the licensing authority prevents many from using newly-available models or tools, thus further delaying the use of new simulation tools that are closer to a true predictive capability. These two issues combined deter licensing authorities from trusting the predictive capabilities of software and increases the reliance on new experiments.
The challenge thus becomes to develop and improve versatile predictive simulation capabilities that can easily integrate new models without a lengthy re-qualification process, while designing and developing a set of broad, challenging, and well-instrumented experiments that can clearly demonstrate the predictive capability of the new simulation tools and identify the areas in which the tools need improvement. Significant computational challenges exist in quantifying the impact of uncertainties on nuclear reactor performance in a multiphysics context.
Software development standards have increased significantly over the years, but the quality assurance process remains uneven. Legacy codes have been grandfathered into the licensing regime, while new codes require a significant quality assurance process, dissuading attempts to integrate advancements. At the same time, experiments have become so cost-prohibitive that laboratories and industry rely on old experiments that often lack the detail and precision needed to validate advanced first principles simulation capabilities.
Addressing this challenge requires a greater trust in first principles modeling and simulation capabilities and the definition of simpler guidelines in the development of quality-assured software. Additionally, high-fidelity software should be used to design a set of broad critical experiments in order to gain support in the construction of such facilities. A new paradigm that closely integrates these experiments and predictive simulations for the design and licensing process is needed.
Last modified May 12, 2017, 1:23am CDT