October 2012

Equipment-sharing program at Memphis, Phoenix locations augments industry protocol to pool safety equipment in event of emergencies

WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 25, 2012—The nuclear energy industry is adding another layer of safety and public protection by developing regional centers for critical equipment that could be needed to maintain safety in the event of an extreme event at America’s nuclear energy facilities. All companies that operate nuclear energy facilities approved a contract to develop two regional response centers managed by Pooled Equipment Inventory Co.

The regional response centers will be located near Memphis and Phoenix and capable of delivering supplemental emergency equipment to any of America’s nuclear energy facilities within 24 hours, enabling them to safely manage a loss of electrical power and/or cooling water supply. The equipment and materials provided by the regional response centers supplement the additional portable equipment purchased at all 64 nuclear energy facilities that also can be utilized and shared during a site emergency.

Pooled Equipment Inventory Co. has been providing a shared inventory service to meet emergent equipment needs to the nuclear industry for more than 30 years. The company has established an alliance with AREVA to implement the regional response centers by expanding its capability to provide services that include emergency response planning, procurement and outage services.

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Industry/Regulatory/Political

  • AREVA has announced a contract to provide all 23 of Japan’s pressurized water reactors with passive autocatalytic recombiners, which will help prevent hydrogen from building up in emergency situations. The company said it will install more than 100 of the devices, which work constantly to oxidize traces of hydrogen into steam catalytically. The devices are not dependent on external power or operator intervention. AREVA says it has installed the recombiners in more than 140 plants worldwide. No Japanese facilities currently have the equipment. At the Fukushima Daiichi facility last year, hydrogen buildup from the oxidation of zirconium cladding in steam led to explosions that caused extensive damage.
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The following news article originally appeared in NEI’s Nuclear Energy Overview.

The NRC’s latest analysis of faults near the Diablo Canyon nuclear energy facility in California confirms that the plant’s design could withstand earthquakes near the site, the agency said in a statement.

The NRC’s work is laid out in research information letter (RIL) 12-01, “Confirmatory Analysis of Seismic Hazard at the Diablo Canyon Power Plant from the Shoreline Fault Zone.” The RIL, part of an ongoing effort to better understand earthquake sources near Diablo Canyon, focuses on a recently identified source, the “Shoreline fault” about a kilometer offshore from the plant.
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The following news article originally appeared in NEI’s Nuclear Energy Overview.

An online poll across 24 countries shows nuclear energy has more than 50 percent support in the United States, China, India and Great Britain, but less than majority support in other countries, including Japan, Germany and Italy.

The survey, taken by British polling firm Ipsos MORI, also demonstrated a marked uptick in support in most countries compared to a previous Ipsos poll on the subject taken in April 2011, a month after the accident at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi facility.
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The following news article originally appeared in NEI’s Nuclear Energy Overview.

Discussion of the cumulative effects of regulation on NRC licensees dominated a panel at last week’s NEI Licensing Forum, with the views of the industry’s commercial nuclear energy and fuel cycle sectors well represented.

Alex Marion, NEI’s vice president for special projects, said that while the topic is not new, it has taken on a new urgency “when you consider the NRC regulatory actions taken and proposed for the Fukushima near-term task force recommendations.”
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Activity ID: 1002943 Activity Name: NEI Remarketing Safety Activity Group Name: Remarketing Safety First