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Cost Benefit Analysis Underway At San Onofre

PART 3 -US NRC BLOG – DAB Safety Team September 23, 2012 at 1:09 pm
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ULTIMATE WISDOM

Based on a review of Industry Benchmarking and Operating Experience, the DAB Team concludes, “To minimize the risk of a radiological accident and impact to public health and safety due to a potential radiological accident and radiation / contamination exposure requires some of the following attributes between the designer, manufacturer, installer, maintainer and the operator during the design, fabrication and operation of the nuclear steam generators components (not limited to): Solid teamwork and alignment, critical investigative and questioning attitude, flow of information in a timely and accurate manner, self-check, peer check, independent check, industry bench and vendor marking, review of industry operating experience, NRC Reports, Information Notices, prudence, diligence and attention to detail, verification/validation mock-up test data , computer modeling accuracy and review of critical parameters. The industry papers research indicate that the fluid elastic instability is a very complex problem and causes immense unprecedented problems as witnessed in the SONGS RSGs, when the undesired effects of the flow fields have not been accounted and corrected in the design, manufacturing and testing. In many situations, however, after components are already in operation, modifications/repairs to correct the flow-induced vibrations resulting in fluid elastic instability are very pain staking, time consuming, extremely complex to diagnose/repair and immensely costly to the Utility and Ratepayers.”

This is an interpretation by The DAB Safety Team of the basic facts essential for the promotion and production of affordable and safe nuclear power. This interpretation is consistent with His Excellency President Obama’s, Honorable Senator Barbara Boxer’s Open Government Initiative, and NRC’s Solemn Obligation and Transparency with the Public and News Media. This basic understanding is also in conformance with Nuclear Energy Institute Charter/Guidance on safe and cheap power and Institute of Nuclear Power Operations Principles regarding operations, training and management for licensee and workers responsible for the operation of a nuclear power plant. Therefore no reply or moderation of these comments is required, unless NRC choses to do so.

September 23, 2012 at 10:29 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Cost Benefit Analysis Underway At San Onofre


PART 2 -US NRC BLOG – DAB Safety Team September 23, 2012 at 1:09 pm
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ULTIMATE WISDOM

 At noon on March 22, 1975, both Units 1 and 2 at the Brown's Ferry plant in Alabama were operating at full power, delivering 2200 megawatts of electricity to the Tennessee Valley Authority. The real irony of the Browns Ferry fire was that two days before, a similar fire had started but had been put out successfully. After the fire on Thursday night, the shift engineers and three assistant shift engineers met. According to one of them, "We discussed among the group the procedure of using lighted candles to check for air leaks. Our conclusion was that the procedure should be stopped. Yet nothing was done.

The issues is about production of cheap and safe electricity and meeting NRC reasonable assurance by the Licensee for the safe operation of a Nuclear Power Plant and excellence in plant management, operations, maintenance, financial discipline, regulatory compliance, configuration control, fire/safety, nuclear and engineering training, work process planning, quality assurance, emergency preparedness, transparency with workers, public, media, regulators and offsite agencies, ensuring freedom from retaliation, intimidation, and harassment from expressing nuclear safety concerns. The verbatim compliance will provide the adequate protection of safety and health against radiological accidents. The protection of public safety and health is the overriding obligation of the Licensee and Excellence implies being 100% correct.

The World’s Foremost Renowned Professeur Titulaire, Michel J. Pettigrew, Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal, on the subject of fluid elastic instability and turbulence-induced vibration states, “It is concluded that, although there are still areas of uncertainty, most flow-induced vibration problems can be avoided provided that nuclear components are properly analysed at the design stage and that the analyses are supported by adequate testing and development work when required. There has been no case yet where vibration considerations have seriously constrained the designer.”

One Masters Research Student R. Viollette states, “Fluid elastic instability is the most important vibration excitation mechanism for heat exchanger, or steam generator type of tube bundles. It is so because of the very high vibrations amplitude that it can induce to the tubes, which can lead to rapid failure by fatigue or wear. Also, unlike vibrations induced by vortex shedding (vortex-induced vibrations), fluid elastic instability is not a self-limiting phenomenon: amplitude of vibrations does continue to increase with velocity past the critical onset of the instability.

Continued on Part 3

September 23, 2012 at 10:27 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Cost Benefit Analysis Underway At San Onofre

US NRC BLOG – DAB Safety Team September 23, 2012 at 1:09 pm
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ULTIMATE WISDOM

Solar energy, radiant light and heat from the sun, has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. The Sun produces an amazing amount of light and heat through nuclear reactions. The point is that Americans need affordable and safe nuclear energy (electricity) to enjoy the challenges and comforts provided by the 21st century technology. Some of the Alternative Technologies for these energy needs are too expensive and unreliable.

No Government, Rules, Organization, Technology, Safety and Design Features, and Quality Assurance/Inspection Procedures can guarantee 100% the protection of human beings from radiological accidents caused by Natural Disasters, Tests and Experiments, Equipment Failures, Organizational Weakness, Poor Maintenance Practices and Human Errors.

 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Catastrophe was a series of equipment failures, nuclear meltdowns, and releases of radioactive materials, following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on 11 March 2011. The battle to contain the contamination and avert a greater catastrophe ultimately involved undetermined number of workers and cost undetermined amount of money, crippling the Japanese economy

 The Chernobyl disaster was a catastrophic nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine, which was under the direct jurisdiction of the central authorities of the Soviet Union. An explosion and fire released large quantities of radioactive contamination into the atmosphere, which spread over much of Western USSR and Europe. The battle to contain the contamination and avert a greater catastrophe ultimately involved over 500,000 workers and cost an estimated 18 billion rubles, crippling the Soviet economy.

 The Three Mile Island accident was a partial nuclear meltdown, which occurred at the Three Mile Island power plant in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, United States on March 28, 1979. It was the worst accident in U.S. commercial nuclear power plant history and resulted in the release of small amounts of radioactive gases and radioactive iodine into the environment. According to the IAEA, the Three Mile Island accident was a significant turning point in the global development of nuclear power. From 1963–1979, the number of reactors under construction globally increased every year except 1971 and 1978. However, following the event, the number of reactors under construction in the U.S. declined every year from 1980-1998 in total, 51 American nuclear reactors were canceled from 1980–1984.

Continued on Part 2

September 23, 2012 at 10:25 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

San Onofre Still Offline Three Weeks Later


****************************************************
Honorable Senator Boxer,
The above information Posted on the US NRC Blog by DAB Safety Team is for your files and future action.
Sincerely
Thanks
DAB Safety Team (Real name known to Senator Boxer)
******************************************************
Thank you for contacting Senator Boxer.
E-mail the Senator: Legislation and Policy Comments

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts on the important issues facing us. As you might imagine, I receive thousands of e-mails, phone calls, faxes and letters every week from concerned citizens like you. By filling out my online e-mail form completely and thoroughly, you will help me respond to your message more quickly.
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Unfortunately, I can only respond to California residents. If you are not a resident of California, please contact one of the Senators from your home state.

September 20, 2012 at 6:04 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

San Onofre Still Offline Three Weeks Later

Part 2 - Posted on the US NRC Blog by DAB Safety Team
September 20, 2012 at 11:49 am
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The issue also includes the safety concerns of increased risks from degraded SONGS operator performance (e.g., because of environmental conditions, confusing and convoluted mind boggling operating and emergency plan procedures, control room disruptions, communication errors between the control room operating crew and the field staff, etc.) that can occur simultaneously during the event. Without new published industry or analyzed information available for this type of Scenario Specifics to SONGS, DAB Safety Team concludes that this is a significant nuclear safety issue and needs to be addressed by MHI benchmarking Other World Wide Nuclear Utilities and Manufacturers in the Unit 2 Restart Plan.

1. The first question is, whether any of the Vendors on the SONGS Team have the Video Cameras/Other technology to determine the gaps between the inner most U-Tubes and Anti-Vibration Bars.

2. The second question is, if the Unit 2 is running at 70% reduced power, whether any of the Vendors can install remote camera/sensors all around the U-tube bundle in the high pressure, high steam-water environment, so that the Control Room Operators can detect the excessive vibrations via remote video cameras/alarms of the inner most U-Tubes and Anti-Vibration Bars and take appropriate actions to trip the reactor and initiate a controlled plant shutdown to minimize the risk for the public by stopping a radiological accident in progress.

Your urgent response along With the SCE Unit 2 Restart Plan & MHI Root cause Evaluation in accordance with President Obama’s Open Government Initiative and NRC Open and Transparent Policy is highly appreciated. A Copy of this email will be forwarded to Senator Barbara Boxer for her Files.

Thanks
DAB Safety Team

September 20, 2012 at 5:15 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

San Onofre Still Offline Three Weeks Later

Part 1 - Posted on the US NRC Blog by DAB Safety Team
September 20, 2012 at 11:49 am
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

September 20, 2012

Dear Mr. Elmo E. Collins, Jr.

DAB Safety Team concern is that an un-isolable main steam line break with SONGS Unit 2 replacement steam generator multiple tube leaks or ruptures even at reduced power operations could result in releases in excess of 10 CFR Part 100 and adversely affect the health and safety of the Southern Californians within the 10-mile Emergency Planning Zone.

SAFETY SIGNIFICANCE

Operating experience from in-situ pressure testing resulting in the failure of 8 Alloy 690 TT tubes in SONGS Unit 3 replacement steam generator (Unprecedented experience with Alloy 690 TT Tubes failures in the World Nuclear Power Plant Operating History) indicates that the potential exists (with the type of recent 6.5 magnitude earthquake experienced in Mexico) for a postulated main steam line break to occur and significantly increase SG leakage, because resonant, flow-induced turbulent vibrations and fluid elastic instability conditions can cause increased tube leakage and the resulting high pressure jets from the leaking tubes can impinge on other damaged tubes and lead to cascading tube ruptures.

Consequences of such an accident scenario are significant with Unit 2 Restart even at reduced power because primary coolant could be lost to the environment through the leaking or ruptured SG tubes (Due to formation of localized steam voids in the superheated central portion of U-Tube bundle, a weak Anti Vibration Support System and MHI Flowering Effect) and out the break in the secondary system. Given that the secondary side opening is outside containment but not isolable, the release of radioactivity could be above 10 CFR Part 100 limits, depending upon the iodine spiking factor and the duration of blowdown. Further, the escaping coolant will not be returned to the containment sump. There is a high probability that the ECCS will successfully mitigate a LOCA during the injection phase (Hope it works and SONGS has adequately maintained and frequently tested the ECCS Systems). However, when the refueling water storage tank (RWST) is depleted, it may not be possible to use the recirculation mode (Hope it does not happen), possibly resulting in core damage. Because the release path is open to the environment outside of the containment, the release of radioactivity from the postulated core damage event could have significant risk impacts.

Continued on Part 2

September 20, 2012 at 5:14 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

San Onofre Still Offline Three Weeks Later

DAB Safety Team Nuclear Safety Concern – SONGS U2 Restart

The concern is that an un-isolable main steam line break with SONGS Unit 2 replacement steam generator multiple tube leaks or ruptures even at reduced power operations could result in releases in excess of 10 CFR Part 100 and adversely affect the health and safety of the Southern Californians within the 10-mile Emergency Planning Zone.

Safety Significance

Operating experience from in-situ pressure testing resulting in 8 tube leaks in SONGS Unit 3 replacement steam generator indicates that the potential existed for a main steam line break to significantly increase SG leakage, because resonant vibrations and fluid elastic instability of SG tubes from a secondary side blowdown could have cause increased tube leakage. Southern Californians were lucky this time because only one Unit 3 Steam Generator tube leaked, which was detected and Unit 3 was shutdown.

Consequences of such an accident scenario are significant with Unit 2 Restart even at reduced power because primary coolant could be lost to the environment through the leaking or ruptured SG tubes (Due to formation of localized steam voids in the superheated central portion of U-Tube bundle, a weak Anti Vibration Support System and MHI Flowering Effect) and out the break in the secondary system. Given that the secondary side opening is outside containment but not isolable, the release of radioactivity could be above 10 CFR Part 100 limits, depending upon the iodine spiking factor and the duration of blowdown. Further, the escaping coolant will not be returned to the containment sump. There is a high probability that the ECCS will successfully mitigate a LOCA during the injection phase (Hope it works and SONGS has adequately maintained and frequently tested the ECCS Systems). However, when the refueling water storage tank (RWST) is depleted, it may not be possible to use the recirculation mode (Hope it does not happen), possibly resulting in core damage. Because the release path is open to the environment outside of the containment, the release of radioactivity from the postulated core damage event could have significant risk impacts.

The issue also includes the safety concerns of increased risk from degraded SONGS operator performance because of environmental conditions that can occur during the event. DAB Safety Team concludes that this is a significant nuclear safety issue and needs to be addressed by SCE by benchmarking Other World Wide Nuclear Utilities and Manufacturers in the Unit 2 Restart Plan.

September 19, 2012 at 11:07 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Proposed Changes To San Onofre's Decommissioning Fund

Part 7 - SONGS $569 Million Replacement Steam Generators

10. Two Important Questions That Need to Be Answered

A. Why did the SONGS Replacement Steam Generators suffer so much degradation so soon, as compared to all these other SG’s?

B. If NRC Region IV Staff thinks MHI made mistakes in the design and fabrication of SONGS RSGs as a Appendix B Qualified Supplier, then why would the NRC even consider licensing MHI APWR plants in USA even though MHI has been recognized by NEI as a Nuclear Power Plant Design Manufacturer and the NRC is now in the process of licensing MHI's 1700 MW APWR in USA?

11. DAB Safety Team Conclusions and Honest Answers from Regional Administrator for the NRC Region IV Office, Mr. Elmo E. Collins

The DAB Safety Team believes it is primarily the fault of SCE’s Design and Performance Specifications coupled with all the numerous design changes that were different from what they told the NRC they were doing. These changes were not correctly identified by MHI’s Fabrication and Testing Technology or their Thermal-Hydraulic Computer Codes, which was found to be faulty. If SCE had gone through a complete NRC Licensing Amendment Process, as required by replacement SG’s that are not “like for like” replacements, which these certainly were NOT, this engineering debacle probably never would have happened.

Factual and unbiased answers from the NRC consistent with President Obama's and Senator Barbara Boxer's Open Government Initiative will help the people of Southern California and the rest of the USA decide about the future functionality of nuclear power in USA.

The DAB Safety Team asks that NRC respond to these basic questions identified in Item 10 above ASAP, so that we can review the SONGS Unit 2 Restart Plan and MHI Root Cause Evaluation (If NRC will be kind enough to publish it on NRC Website and provide to public. SCE and MHI should also provide these documents ASAP for Public acceptance?) before commenting at the NRC’s Oct. 9, 2012 Meeting about San Onofre! Otherwise it is a waste of time for the public and Violation of Freedom Information Act and inconsistent with President Obama's and Senator Boxer's Open Government Initiative.

End of Article

Thanks for the opportunity KPBS to post these comments. DAB Safety Team is independently investigating the San Onofre Replacement Generator Tube Leak and other San Onofre Nuclear Safety Concerns for the Southern California Public, News Media, SONGS Plant Workers and Ratepayers. Please provide any comments or questions by email at helpallcqiascnp@yahoo.com

September 19, 2012 at 8:26 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Proposed Changes To San Onofre's Decommissioning Fund

Part 6 - SONGS $569 Million Replacement Steam Generators

8. NRC Design Certification Application Review - U.S. Advanced Pressurized-Water Reactor (US-APWR)

Who: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.

What: Application for Standard Design Certification for the U.S. Advanced Pressurized-Water Reactor (US-APWR), a 1700 MWe [Core Thermal Power 4,451-MWt pressurized-water reactor (PWR)]

When: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries submitted the Standard Design Certification Application on December 31, 2007. The staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is currently performing a detailed review of that application.

Expected NRC Approval – March 2015

Ref.http://www.nrc.gov/reactors/new-reactors/design-cert/apwr.html

9. COL applications submitted for ESBWR and US-APWR

Combined construction and operating license (COL) applications for three GE-Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) ESBWR reactors and two Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) US-APWR reactors were submitted to the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) in September.

The first COL application for the 1700MWe US-APWR design was filed on 19 September, for two units at Luminant’s Comanche Peak nuclear plant near Glen Rose, Texas. On the same day, Luminant (formerly TXU) and MHI announced they had entered into an agreement to form a joint venture to advance the development of the two potential new nuclear reactors.

Under the terms of the joint venture agreement, Luminant would retain an 88% ownership share and MHI a 12% stake. The joint venture is expected to continue development of the COL application and fund project development costs during the period preceding issuance of the COL. The joint venture’s closing is currently anticipated to occur before the end of the year.

Luminant and MHI said they would seek support for financing from the US and Japanese governments and that a loan guarantee application form has already been submitted to the US Department of Energy. In December 2007, MHI submitted an application to have the US-APWR design certified by the NRC.

Ref. Nuclear Engineering International, 24 September 2008

Continued Part 7

September 19, 2012 at 8:16 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Proposed Changes To San Onofre's Decommissioning Fund

Part 5 - SONGS $569 Million Replacement Steam Generators

5. Edison Press Statements about new SONGS MHI RSGs

SONGS Chief Nuclear Officer Pete Dietrich Jan 10 2012. “The plant’s largest components — steam generators — are just two years old and represent the safest, most efficient 21st century machinery.” Source: MarketWatch

The installation is “a major milestone in the station’s history,” said Ross Ridenoure, Southern California Edison senior vice president and chief nuclear officer. “We’re committed to making sure it’s done right.” January 28th, 2009, Source: LA Times

Edison President John R. Fielder said new steam generators are cheaper for ratepayers than building new power plants or buying power on the open market. December 16th, 2005 Source: LA Times

The new steam generators are designed to last longer, said Mike Wharton, manager of the steam-generator replacement project. “They are designed for 40 years,” he said. “We expect we’ll actually be able to get 60 years out of them … better materials, better design. You learn over the course of years what works well and what doesn’t, and you try to build it into the next generation.” December 24th, 2009 Source: OC Register

6. Nuclear Energy Institute qualifies MHI as “U.S. Nuclear Plant Designer” Edison

Washington, DC, February 23, 2009 – Mitsubishi Nuclear Energy Systems, Inc. (MNES), has successfully qualified for membership in a leading U.S. industry trade group in the special category of “U.S. nuclear plant designers,” the first such recognition of a wholly-owned subsidiary of a Japanese company.

The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) designation places MNES, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) of Tokyo, among three other nuclear plant designers in the group’s membership. The three other companies that have qualified for inclusion in the nuclear plant designer category are AREVA, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy and Westinghouse Electric Company.

7. MHI’s New US-APWR

The US-APWR is the slightly modified design to comply with US requirements based on technology accomplished of APWR (Advanced Pressurized Water Reactor): (1) High performance, The world's largest electrical output: 1,700MW class, (2) The world's highest level of thermal efficiency, (3) High economy, (4) The shortest construction period in the world, (5) The world all-time low cost of construction, (6) Enhanced reliability: The latest element technology is proven, and (7) Enhanced safety: Safety of the top-level world (Simplified configuration with 4 mechanical sub-system, In-containment refueling water storage pit (utilization of advanced accumulators).

Continued Part 6

September 19, 2012 at 8:11 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

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