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Life Beyond 60 Years: The Importance of Sustaining the Current Fleet of Light Water Reactors in the U.S. and the R&D Needs

[+] Author Affiliations
Ronaldo Szilard, Hongbin Zhang

Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID

Paper No. ICONE18-29036, pp. 7-16; 10 pages
doi:10.1115/ICONE18-29036
From:
  • 18th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering
  • 18th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering: Volume 1
  • Xi’an, China, May 17–21, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4929-3
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME

abstract

The current fleet of 104 nuclear power plants in the U.S. began their operation with 40 years operating licenses. About half of these plants have their licenses renewed to 60 years and most of the remaining plants are anticipated to pursue license extension to 60 years. With the superior performance of the current fleet and formidable costs of building new nuclear power plants, there has been significant interest to extend the lifetime of the current fleet even further from 60 years to 80 years. This paper addresses some of the key long term technical challenges and identifies R&D needs related to the long term safe and economic operation of the current fleet.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME

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