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Title: A HUMAN AUTOMATION INTERACTION CONCEPT FOR A SMALL MODULAR REACTOR CONTROL ROOM

Abstract

Many advanced nuclear power plant (NPP) designs incorporate higher degrees of automation than the existing fleet of NPPs. Automation is being introduced or proposed in NPPs through a wide variety of systems and technologies, such as advanced displays, computer-based procedures, advanced alarm systems, and computerized operator support systems. Additionally, many new reactor concepts, both full scale and small modular reactors, are proposing increased automation and reduced staffing as part of their concept of operations. However, research consistently finds that there is a fundamental tradeoff between system performance with increased automation and reduced human performance. There is a need to address the question of how to achieve high performance and efficiency of high levels of automation without degrading human performance. One example of a new NPP concept that will utilize greater degrees of automation is the SMR concept from NuScale Power. The NuScale Power design requires 12 modular units to be operated in one single control room, which leads to a need for higher degrees of automation in the control room. Idaho National Laboratory (INL) researchers and NuScale Power human factors and operations staff are working on a collaborative project to address the human performance challenges of increased automation and tomore » determine the principles that lead to optimal performance in highly automated systems. This paper will describe this concept in detail and will describe an experimental test of the concept. The benefits and challenges of the approach will be discussed.« less

Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
OSTI Identifier:
1393164
Report Number(s):
INL/CON-17-41509
DOE Contract Number:
DE-AC07-05ID14517
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: 10th International Topical Meeting on Nuclear Plant Instrumentation, Control and Human Machine Interface Technologies, San Francisco, CA, USA, June 11–15, 2017
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
99 GENERAL AND MISCELLANEOUS; Automation; Situation Awareness

Citation Formats

Le Blanc, Katya, Spielman, Zach, and Hill, Rachael. A HUMAN AUTOMATION INTERACTION CONCEPT FOR A SMALL MODULAR REACTOR CONTROL ROOM. United States: N. p., 2017. Web.
Le Blanc, Katya, Spielman, Zach, & Hill, Rachael. A HUMAN AUTOMATION INTERACTION CONCEPT FOR A SMALL MODULAR REACTOR CONTROL ROOM. United States.
Le Blanc, Katya, Spielman, Zach, and Hill, Rachael. Thu . "A HUMAN AUTOMATION INTERACTION CONCEPT FOR A SMALL MODULAR REACTOR CONTROL ROOM". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1393164.
@article{osti_1393164,
title = {A HUMAN AUTOMATION INTERACTION CONCEPT FOR A SMALL MODULAR REACTOR CONTROL ROOM},
author = {Le Blanc, Katya and Spielman, Zach and Hill, Rachael},
abstractNote = {Many advanced nuclear power plant (NPP) designs incorporate higher degrees of automation than the existing fleet of NPPs. Automation is being introduced or proposed in NPPs through a wide variety of systems and technologies, such as advanced displays, computer-based procedures, advanced alarm systems, and computerized operator support systems. Additionally, many new reactor concepts, both full scale and small modular reactors, are proposing increased automation and reduced staffing as part of their concept of operations. However, research consistently finds that there is a fundamental tradeoff between system performance with increased automation and reduced human performance. There is a need to address the question of how to achieve high performance and efficiency of high levels of automation without degrading human performance. One example of a new NPP concept that will utilize greater degrees of automation is the SMR concept from NuScale Power. The NuScale Power design requires 12 modular units to be operated in one single control room, which leads to a need for higher degrees of automation in the control room. Idaho National Laboratory (INL) researchers and NuScale Power human factors and operations staff are working on a collaborative project to address the human performance challenges of increased automation and to determine the principles that lead to optimal performance in highly automated systems. This paper will describe this concept in detail and will describe an experimental test of the concept. The benefits and challenges of the approach will be discussed.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Jun 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Thu Jun 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Conference:
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  • Based on the established and proven high-temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) technologies from the Peach Bottom 1 and Fort St. Vrain utility-operated units, a new small modular HTGR reactor is currently being evaluated. The basic nuclear reactor heat source, with a prismatic core, is being designed so that the decay heat can be removed by passive means (i.e., natural circulation). The proposed new HTGR concept has a variety of applications, including electrical power generation, cogeneration, and high-temperature process heat. This paper discusses the simplest application, i.e., a steam Rankine cycle electrical power generating version. The gas-cooled modular reactor concepts presented aremore » based on a graphite moderated prismatic core of low-power density (i.e., 4.1 W/cm/sup 3/) with a thermal rating of 250 MW(t). With the potential for inherently safe characteristics, a new small reactor could be sited close to industrial and urban areas to provide electrical power and thermal heating needs (i.e., district and space heating). Incorporating a multiplicity of small modular units to provide a larger power output is also discussed. The potential for a small, inherently safe HTGR reactor concept is highlighted.« less
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Additionally, development ofmore » advanced reactor concepts, such as Generation IV designs and small modular reactors, introduces different plant conditions (e.g., higher temperatures, different coolants, etc.) and unique plant configurations (e.g., multiunit plants with shared systems, balance of plant architectures with reconfigurable co-generation options) that increase the need for enhanced ICHMI capabilities to fully achieve industry goals related to economic competitiveness, safety and reliability, sustainability, and proliferation resistance and physical protection. As a result, significant challenges remain to be addressed to enable the nuclear power industry to complete the transition to safe and comprehensive use of modern ICHMI technology. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has recognized that ICHMI research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) is needed to resolve the technical challenges that may compromise the effective and efficient utilization of modern ICHMI technology and consequently inhibit realization of the benefits offered by expanded utilization of nuclear power. Consequently, several DOE programs have substantial ICHMI RD&D elements within their respective research portfolios. This paper describes current ICHMI research in support of advanced small modular reactors. The objectives that can be achieved through execution of the defined RD&D are to provide optimal technical solutions to critical ICHMI issues, resolve technology gaps arising from the unique measurement and control characteristics of advanced reactor concepts, provide demonstration of needed technologies and methodologies in the nuclear power application domain, mature emerging technologies to facilitate commercialization, and establish necessary technical evidence and application experience to enable timely and predictable licensing. 1 Introduction Instrumentation, controls, and human-machine interfaces are essential enabling technologies that strongly influence nuclear power plant performance and operational costs. The nuclear power industry is currently engaged in a transition from traditional analog-based instrumentation, controls, and human-machine interface (ICHMI) systems to implementations employing digital technologies. This transition has primarily occurred in an ad hoc fashion through individual system upgrades at existing plants and has been constrained by licenseability concerns. Although the recent progress in constructing new plants has spurred design of more fully digital plant-wide ICHMI systems, the experience base in the nuclear power application domain is limited. Additionally, development of advanced reactor concepts, such as Generation IV designs and small modular reactors, introduces different plant conditions (e.g., higher temperatures, different coolants, etc.) and unique plant configurations (e.g., multiunit plants with shared systems, balance of plant architectures with reconfigurable co-generation options) that increase the need for enhanced ICHMI capabilities to fully achieve industry goals related to economic competitiveness, safety and reliability, sustainability, and proliferation resistance and physical protection. As a result, significant challenges remain to be addressed to enable the nuclear power industry to complete the transition to safe and comprehensive use of modern ICHMI technology. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has recognized that ICHMI research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) is needed to resolve the technical challenges that may compromise the effective and efficient utilization of modern ICHMI technology and consequently inhibit realization of the benefits offered by expanded utilization of nuclear power. Consequently, several DOE programs have substantial ICHMI RD&D elements to their respective research portfolio. The objectives that can be achieved through execution of the defined RD&D are to provide optimal technical solutions to critical ICHMI issues, resolve technology gaps arising from the unique measurement and control characteristics of advanced reactor concepts, provide demonstration of needed technologies and methodologies in the nuclear power application domain, mature emerging technologies to facilitate...« less