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2021 ANS Winter Meeting and Technology Expo
November 30–December 3, 2021
Washington, DC|Washington Hilton
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Neutron noise monitoring during plant operation expedites flexure replacement at Salem-1
The nuclear industry has historically relied on intermittent ultrasonic test and visual inspections of pressurized water reactor components to identify and manage degradation. While this reactive approach has proven to be effective, imagine a scenario in which the degradation could propagate throughout the reactor internals, making a more proactive measure necessary to avoid a major enterprise risk to the plant. Could a utility identify the onset of degradation within the reactor internals during plant operation? If so, could a repair be developed prior to the next refueling outage to prevent additional, cascading degradation? That is exactly the situation that Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) and Westinghouse engineers were able to navigate over the course of the 2019–2020 operating cycle at Salem Unit 1, resulting in a tremendous success for the plant and a historic landmark in the nuclear industry, while earning the team a 2021 Nuclear Energy Institute Top Innovative Practice (TIP) award.
Technical Session|Panel|Sponsored by IRD
Tuesday, June 15, 2021|3:30–5:15PM (4:30–6:15PM EDT)
James K. Jewell (INL)
Brenden J. Heidrich (INL)
Susan Gallier (ANS)
Idaho National Laboratory held a workshop in September 2020 to provide a snapshot look at current international, in-reactor testing and irradiation capabilities. Gaps were identified, and mitigation strategies and recommendations were discussed.
As new material innovations are being developed for in-reactor applications for reactor life extension long-term operation, and advanced reactor technologies, there is an increased need for materials qualification and assessment programs. In-reactor testing capabilities are vital to the on-going success of these DOE-NE programs and initiatives. Beyond performing simple irradiations in test reactors, few facilities exist internationally which can perform instrumented, in-situ irradiations on structural materials, and with the recent shut down of facilities hosted at Halden and NRU (example: instrumented fatigue loop, and in-situ creep), there are further gaps in the industry left unfilled. A new focus is being placed on the use of accelerator-based technologies to fill in some of these gaps, but these must be viewed as supplemental, and not surrogates to in-reactor capabilities.
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