skip to main content

SciTech ConnectSciTech Connect

Title: Light Water Reactor Sustainability Program: Reactor Safety Technologies Pathway Technical Program Plan

In the aftermath of the March 2011 multi-unit accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant (Fukushima), the nuclear community has been reassessing certain safety assumptions about nuclear reactor plant design, operations and emergency actions, particularly with respect to extreme events that might occur and that are beyond each plant’s current design basis. Because of our significant domestic investment in nuclear reactor technology (99 operating reactors in the fleet of commercial LWRs with five under construction), the United States has been a major leader internationally in these activities. The U.S. nuclear industry is voluntarily pursuing a number of additional safety initiatives. The NRC continues to evaluate and, where deemed appropriate, establish new requirements for ensuring adequate protection of public health and safety in the occurrence of low probability events at nuclear plants; (e.g., mitigation strategies for beyond design basis events initiated by external events like seismic or flooding initiators). The DOE has also played a major role in the U.S. response to the Fukushima accident. Initially, DOE worked with the Japanese and the international community to help develop a more complete understanding of the Fukushima accident progression and its consequences, and to respond to various safety concerns emerging from uncertaintiesmore » about the nature of and the effects from the accident. DOE R&D activities are focused on providing scientific and technical insights, data, analyses methods that ultimately support industry efforts to enhance safety. These activities are expected to further enhance the safety performance of currently operating U.S. nuclear power plants as well as better characterize the safety performance of future U.S. plants. In pursuing this area of R&D, DOE recognizes that the commercial nuclear industry is ultimately responsible for the safe operation of licensed nuclear facilities. As such, industry is considered the primary “end user” of the results from this DOE-sponsored work. The response to the Fukushima accident has been global, and there is a continuing multinational interest in collaborations to better quantify accident consequences and to incorporate lessons learned from the accident. DOE will continue to seek opportunities to facilitate collaborations that are of value to the U.S. industry, particularly where the collaboration provides access to vital data from the accident or otherwise supports or leverages other important R&D work. The purpose of the Reactor Safety Technology R&D is to improve understanding of beyond design basis events and reduce uncertainty in severe accident progression, phenomenology, and outcomes using existing analytical codes and information gleaned from severe accidents, in particular the Fukushima Daiichi events. This information will be used to aid in developing mitigating strategies and improving severe accident management guidelines for the current light water reactor fleet.« less
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1245511
Report Number(s):
INL/EXT--15-35976
TRN: US1601189
DOE Contract Number:
AC07-05ID14517
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
21 SPECIFIC NUCLEAR REACTORS AND ASSOCIATED PLANTS; REACTOR ACCIDENTS; REACTOR SAFETY; WATER MODERATED REACTORS; NUCLEAR INDUSTRY; NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS; WATER COOLED REACTORS; DESIGN; DATA ANALYSIS; ACCIDENT MANAGEMENT; PERFORMANCE; SUSTAINABILITY; US DOE; FLOODS; EARTHQUAKES; MITIGATION; INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION; PLANNING Pathway Plan; Reactor; Safety; Technology