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Drop Testing of DOE Spent Nuclear Fuel Canisters

[+] Author Affiliations
Spencer D. Snow, D. Keith Morton, Tommy E. Rahl, Robert K. Blandford, Thomas J. Hill

Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID

Paper No. PVP2005-71134, pp. 473-481; 9 pages
  • ASME 2005 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 7: Operations, Applications, and Components
  • Denver, Colorado, USA, July 17–21, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4192-8 | eISBN: 0-7918-3763-7
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


The National Spent Nuclear Fuel Program (NSNFP) at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) prepared four representative Department of Energy (DOE) spent nuclear fuel (SNF) canisters for the purpose of drop testing. The first two canisters represented a modified 24-inch diameter standardized DOE SNF canister and the second two canisters represented the Hanford Multi-Canister Overpack (MCO). The modified canisters and internals were constructed and assembled at the INEEL. The MCO internal weights were fabricated at the INEEL and assembled into two MCOs at Hanford and later shipped to the INEEL for drop test preparation. Drop testing of these four canisters was completed in August 2004 at Sandia National Laboratories. The modified canisters were dropped from 30 feet onto a flat, essentially unyielding surface, with the canisters oriented at 45 degrees and 70 degrees off-vertical at impact. One representative MCO was dropped from 23 feet onto the same flat surface, oriented vertically at impact. The second representative MCO was dropped onto the flat surface from 2 feet oriented at 60 degrees off-vertical. These drop heights and orientations were chosen to meet or exceed the Yucca Mountain repository drop criteria. This paper discusses the comparison of deformations between the actual dropped canisters and those predicted by pre-drop and limited post-drop finite element evaluations performed using ABAQUS/Explicit. Post-drop containment of all four canisters, demonstrated by way of helium leak testing, is also discussed.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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