A shielded cask is used to move welded containers whose contents are liquid. The requirement controlling the design of the shielded cask was the 9-meter drop. Since the orientation of the cask is arbitrary, it is required to assume an orientation which would result in the most damage to the cask. For such drops the target is usually considered to be an unyielding surface. The shielded cask of interest is not designed with components to mitigate the damage due to such drops. The shielded cask contains a thick shell of lead which is considered to move and deform during the 9-meter drop. Additionally, the container of liquid is not physically attached to the cask, and is free to move within the confined space during the event as well. Each component has its own unique stiffness and mass characteristics which could result in a different dynamic response. Since the dynamic response of each component is different, the most damage to a particular component may be sensitive to the boundary conditions. The unyielding surface would maximize the damage to the impact surface of the cask, but as a result, could mitigate the maximum loading applied to other components of the cask. Most actual targets are comprised of concrete. The evaluations are performed using an explicit finite element computer code. Consequently, it is necessary to monitor certain energies, such as the hourglass energy or a sliding energy indicating the behavior of the contact surface associated with the target. These parameters confirm the accurate behavior of the elements comprising the finite element model. Given that components can have a different response, the hourglass energy may also vary. Varying the boundary conditions will affect these types of parameters.
In this paper, the authors present the results of a study of the effect of the boundary conditions on the shielded cask components response to the 9-meter drop. The primary orientation of interest is the end drop. The end drop maximizes the axial loading to the container. It is this orientation which could result in the most compression of the lead shield leading to increased radiation exposure. The container is considered as a pressure vessel and its integrity would be evaluated using the plastic strain based criteria contained in Section III, Division 3. The shielded cask, however, is not a pressure vessel and was evaluated using Section VIII, Division 2, Part 5. Both evaluations used the plastic strains and triaxiality factors determined from the drop evaluations.