Analyzing the safety impact of containment inerting at Vermont Yankee
Author(s)Heising, Carolyn D. (Carolyn DeLane), 1952-; Lepervanche-Valencia, José Gregorio; Pilat, E. E., 1937-; Slifer, Bruce C.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Nuclear Engineering
Yankee Atomic Electric Company
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Post-accident hydrogen generation in BWR containments is analyzed as a function of engineered hydrogen control system, assumed either nitrogen inerting or air dilution. Fault tree analysis was applied to assess the failure probability per demand of each system. These failure rates were then combined with the probability of accidents producing various hydrogen generation rates to calculate the overall system hydrogen control probability. Results indicate that both systems render approximately the same overall hydrogen control probability (air dilution: .917 - .989; nitrogen inerting: .987 - .998). Drywell entries and unscheduled shutdowns were also analyzed to determine the impact on the total BWR accident risk as it relates to the decay heat removal system. Results indicate that inerting may increase the overall risk due to a possible increase in the number of unscheduled shutdowns due to a lessened operator ability to correct and identify "unidentified" leakage from the primary coolant system. Further, possible benefits of inerting due to reduced torus corrosion and fire risk in containment appear to be dominated by the possible operations related disbenefits.
Includes bibliographical referencesFinal Report; July 1980
Cambridge, Mass. : Massachusetts Institute of Technology, [Dept. of Nuclear Engineering, 1980]
MITNE ; no. 240