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Methodology for Reactor Vessel Head Drop Accident Analysis

[+] Author Affiliations
Joseph M. Remic, III, Neal D. Johnston, George J. Demetri, David H. Roarty

Westinghouse Electric Company LLC, Monroeville, PA

Paper No. PVP2008-61686, pp. 471-481; 11 pages
  • ASME 2008 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 3: Design and Analysis
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, July 27–31, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4826-5 | eISBN: 0-7918-3828-5
  • Copyright © 2008 by Westinghouse Electric Company LLC


Nuclear power plants are required to evaluate the risks associated with a potential accident in which the reactor vessel closure head is dropped onto a reactor with fuel installed. This is done as part of an overall effort to safely control the movement of heavy loads in a nuclear facility per NUREG-0612 [1]. In some cases, this requires that an analysis be done of the potential accident to confirm no damage to fuel would occur. This paper provides a methodology for such analysis, along with the basis for the methodology, for a typical pressurized water reactor design. The methodology uses nonlinear, dynamic transient finite element analysis to analyze the event. An example of typical results and acceptance criteria is provided.

Copyright © 2008 by Westinghouse Electric Company LLC



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