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Fusion Science and Technology
Penfield and Enos: Outage planning in the COVID-19 era
Energy Harbor’s Beaver Valley plant, located about 34 miles northwest of Pittsburgh, Pa., was one of many nuclear sites preparing for a scheduled outage as the coronavirus pandemic intensified in March. The baseline objective of any planned outage—to complete refueling on time and get back to producing power—was complicated by the need to prevent the transmission of COVID-19.
While over 200 of the plant’s 850 staff members worked from home to support the outage, about 800 contractors were brought in for jobs that could only be done on-site. Nuclear News Staff Writer Susan Gallier talked with Beaver Valley Site Vice President Rod Penfield and General Plant Manager Matt Enos about the planning and communication required.
Beaver Valley can look forward to several more outages in the future, now that plans to shut down the two Westinghouse pressurized water reactors, each rated at about 960 MWe, were reversed in March. “The deactivation announcement happened in the middle of all our planning,” Enos said. “It’s a shame we haven’t had a chance to get together as a large group and celebrate that yet.”
While the focus remains on safe pandemic operations, the site now has two causes for celebration: an outage success and a long future ahead.
L. Savoldi, R. Bonifetto, A. Brighenti, V. Corato, L. Muzzi, S. Turtu’, R. Zanino, A. Zappatore
Fusion Science and Technology | Volume 72 | Number 3 | October 2017 | Pages 439-448
Technical Paper | dx.doi.org/10.1080/15361055.2017.1333866
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
The design of a suitable quench protection system is fundamental for the safe operation of superconducting magnets and in turn requires the accurate simulation of the quench transient. The quench propagation in a toroidal field (TF) coil for the future European fusion reactor (EU DEMO) is analyzed here considering the latest, layer-wound winding pack (WP) design proposed by ENEA. The thermal-hydraulic model of a TF coil implemented in the 4C code is updated by including the external cryogenic circuits of the WP and of the casing cooling channels and proposing a preliminary layout of the quench lines. Three different locations are considered for the quench initiation: maximum temperature margin in the WP, and minimum and maximum temperature margin on the same turn of the innermost layer. The evolution of the main electrical and thermal-hydraulic parameters is simulated, such as voltage along each layer, quench front propagation both along and across the layers, hot spot temperature, pressurization of the coil and coolant mass flow rate at the coil boundaries, so that the 4C code provides a reliable (in view of its validation) and detailed virtual monitor of what happens inside the coil during the quench transient. In all cases considered, the ENEA design is predicted to satisfy the present (i.e., ITER) design criteria concerning the maximum allowed hot spot temperature.