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Workshop on Probabilistic Flood Hazard Assessment

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Offices of Nuclear Regulatory Research, Nuclear Reactor Regulation, and New Reactors in cooperation with Federal agency partners: U.S. Department of Energy; Federal Energy Regulatory Commission; U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; U.S. Bureau of Reclamation; and U.S. Geological Survey organized and conducted a "Workshop on Probabilistic Flood Hazard Assessment (PFHA)" at NRC headquarters auditorium, Rockville, Maryland, January 29 – 31, 2013.  This research workshop provided a venue for the sharing of information on probabilistic flood hazard assessments of extreme natural and human-related events (i.e., annual exceedance probabilities much less than 2.0 E-3 per year) among the Federal community.  The organizing committee chose the session topics, presenters and panelists.

The workshop objectives were to:

  • assess, discuss, and inform participants on, the state-of-the-practice for extreme flood assessments within a risk context with the following objectives;
  • facilitate the sharing of information between both Federal agencies and other interested parties to bridge the current state-of-knowledge between extreme flood assessments and risk assessments of critical infrastructures;
  • seek ideas and insights on possible ways to develop a PFHA for use in probabilistic risk assessments (PRA);
  • identify potential components of flood-causing mechanisms that lend themselves to probabilistic analysis and warrant further study (i.e., computer-generated storm events);
  • establish realistic plans for coordination of PFHA research studies as the follow-up to the workshop observations and insights; and
  • develop plans for a cooperative research strategy on PFHA for the workshop partners.

The technical focus was to:

  • understand flood assessment needs of the participating Federal agencies with respect to the evaluation of critical industry infrastructure;
  • leverage the flood hazard risk assessment studies performed to date to assess the applicability and practicality of using probabilistic approaches for extreme flood hazard assessments within a risk framework;
  • discuss research or other activities needed to address identified gaps or challenges in the use of PFHA for extreme flood assessments within PRA; and
  • determine how these PFHA approaches and methods can be best utilized in conjunction with more traditional deterministic approaches.

Related Documents

Please note that the workshop proceedings are being developed and will be issued as a NUREG/CP report.  The proceedings will provide summaries of the presentations, panel discussions, and major observations and insights.

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