The combination of one or several processes of ruins can involve the materials failure of a nuclear power plant. These processes arise from the external agents action such as the pressure, the mechanical efforts, the heat flows and the radiations constitute the whole of the “actions” of the surrounding medium. The prolongation and the repetition of these effects can involve a deterioration of the machine. In accordance with the decree of February 26, 1974, the PWR operator must be firstly, sure that the system is controlled according to the situations considered in the file of dimensioning and secondly, be able to know anytime the life of the equipment. The physical phenomena which cause the structures ruin are less complex in the PWR than in the SFR. In the SFR, the high temperatures imposed on components for long periods can involve a significant creep. In the course of time, this deformations accelerate the release of fatigue cracks. To consider the creep, the reactor lifespan is correlated at the numbers of thermals transients envisaged initially. To realize the management of aging in Phenix power plant, it is necessary to carry out an individualized monitoring of the structures and not only on the vessel. We must ensure the good state and/or the correct operation of the significant stations for safety which are the control of the reactivity, the movement of control rods, the primary sodium containment and the decay heat removal. For that, we monitor the main vessel, the conical skirt, the IHX and the Core Cover Plug. A profound knowledge of the thermal transients of the past is necessary to carry out an effective assessment. In order to guarantee that any harmful situation is well taken into the management of aging, we monitor permanently certain measurements (primary and secondary pump speed, hot and cold pool temperatures, IHX-main vessel and reactor roof temperatures). We present in the article the scientific method used in the Physics Section. A logical diagram specific to the type of situation and the structure allows to associate the harmful transient at a identical situation which has been happened in the past. During the last two cycles, the nuclear power plant has sustained 34 startup (20 during the 51st cycle and 14 during the 52nd cycle). After two cycles of operation, there is approximately 70 to 80% of occurrences authorized for the whole of the structures. For the last 4 cycles, the number of transients to come will remain quite lower than the number dimensioned initially.
- Nuclear Engineering Division
Assessment and Management of Aging in Phenix Nuclear Power Plant
Dumarcher, V, Bourrier, JL, Chaucheprat, P, & Boulegue, D. "Assessment and Management of Aging in Phenix Nuclear Power Plant." Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering. Volume 1: Plant Operations, Maintenance and Life Cycle; Component Reliability and Materials Issues; Codes, Standards, Licensing and Regulatory Issues; Fuel Cycle and High Level Waste Management. Miami, Florida, USA. July 17–20, 2006. pp. 653-661. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/ICONE14-89690
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