0

Full Content is available to subscribers

Subscribe/Learn More  >

Digital I&C Operating Experience in the US

[+] Author Affiliations
Bruce Geddes

Southern Engineering Services, Inc., Canton, GA

Ray Torok

Electric Power Research Institute, CA

Paper No. ICONE16-48862, pp. 1009-1018; 10 pages
doi:10.1115/ICONE16-48862
From:
  • 16th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering
  • Volume 3: Thermal Hydraulics; Instrumentation and Controls
  • Orlando, Florida, USA, May 11–15, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4816-7 | eISBN: 0-7918-3820-X
  • Copyright © 2008 by Electric Power Research Institute

abstract

The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) is conducting research in cooperation with the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) regarding Operating Experience of digital Instrumentation and Control (I&C) systems in US nuclear power plants. The primary objective of this work is to extract insights from US nuclear power plant Operating Experience (OE) reports that can be applied to improve Diversity and Defense in Depth (D3) evaluations and methods for protecting nuclear plants against I&C related Common Cause Failures (CCF) that could disable safety functions and thereby degrade plant safety. Between 1987 and 2007, over 500 OE events involving digital equipment in US nuclear power plants were reported through various channels. OE reports for 324 of these events were found in databases maintained by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO). A database was prepared for capturing the characteristics of each of the 324 events in terms of when, where, how, and why the event occurred, what steps were taken to correct the deficiency that caused the event, and what defensive measures could have been employed to prevent recurrence of these events. The database also captures the plant system type, its safety classification, and whether or not the event involved a common cause failure. This work has revealed the following results and insights: - 82 of the 324 “digital” events did not actually involve a digital failure. Of these 82 non-digital events, 34 might have been prevented by making full use of digital system fault tolerance features. - 242 of the 324 events did involve failures in digital systems. The leading contributors to the 242 digital failures were hardware failure modes. Software change appears as a corrective action twice as often as it appears as an event root cause. This suggests that software features are being added to avoid recurrence of hardware failures, and that adequately designed software is a strong defensive measure against hardware failure modes, preventing them from propagating into system failures and ultimately plant events. 54 of the 242 digital failures involved a Common Cause Failure (CCF). - 13 of the 54 CCF events affected safety (1E) systems, and only 2 of those were due to Inadequate Software Design. This finding suggests that software related CCFs on 1E systems are no more prevalent than other CCF mechanisms for which adherence to various regulations and standards is considered to provide adequate protection against CCF. This research provides an extensive data set that is being used to investigate many different questions related to failure modes, causes, corrective actions, and other event attributes that can be compared and contrasted to reveal useful insights. Specific considerations in this study included comparison of 1E vs. non-1E systems, active vs. potential CCFs, and possible defensive measures to prevent these events. This paper documents the dominant attributes of the evaluated events and the associated insights that can be used to improve methods for protecting against digital I&C related CCFs, applying a test of reasonable assurance.

Copyright © 2008 by Electric Power Research Institute

Figures

Tables

Interactive Graphics

Video

Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and Association With Material Stature

Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal

NOTE:
Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In