All nuclear plants in the United States use Fuel Handling Machines (FHM). These complex machines are rail mounted, motorized, and computer controlled for precise positioning of the fuel that must be transferred around, over, into, and through the spent fuel pool. These machines are very top heavy and difficult to seismically qualify. Special analysis techniques are required to consider sliding along the rails or back driving of the drive motor/gearing mechanism in order to minimize the seismic response. This paper documents the seismic qualification of a FHM, using the machine’s back drive force for limiting the seismic effect in the direction of the rail. Qualification consideration is given to the member stresses and joint connections using the AISC Steel Manual 9th Edition (Allowable Stress Design) and CMAA-70-2000, “Specifications for Top Running Bridge & Gantry Type Multiple Girder Electric Overhead Traveling Cranes” by the Crane Manufacturers Association of America.

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