United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

International Collaborative Project to Evaluate Fire Models for Nuclear Power Plant Applications: Summary of 2nd Meeting (NUREG/CP-0173)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: March 2001
Date Published:
July 2001

Proceedings prepared by:
R. Bertrand, IPSN
M. Dey, NRC

Hosted by:
Institute for Protection and Nuclear Safety
77-83, avenue du General-de-Gaulle -92140 Clamart
B.P. 6 -92265 Fontenay-aux-Roses Cedex

Division of Risk Analysis and Applications
Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

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The 2nd meeting of the International Collaborative Project to Evaluate Fire Models for Nuclear Power Plant Applications was hosted by the Institute for Protection and Nuclear Safety (IPSN) and held in the IPSN offices at Fontenay-aux-Roses, France on June 19 and 20, 2000. The Organizing Committee for the meeting included Remy Bertrand from the IPSN (France), and Moni Dey from the U.S. NRC. Eighteen experts from five countries attended this international meeting.

The purpose of the 2nd meeting was mainly to finalize the definition of a benchmark exercise to evaluate zone and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) fire models for application in nuclear power plants. This exercise was identified as the first task of the project and was aimed at evaluating the capability of fire models for simulating cable tray fires of redundant safety trains in nuclear power plants. The discussions at the meeting resulted in three main issues regarding input parameters for the scenarios in the benchmark exercise: (1) specification of the fire source; (2) modeling of the target; and (3) value for the lower oxygen limit. The specification of the fire source is fundamental to the input for fire models, and can significantly affect the predicted thermal environment. A consensus was reached on the characterization of the HRRs for the scenarios in the benchmark exercise. Although agreement was reached on the specification and values for the target model and lower oxygen limit to be used for the benchmark exercise, participants did not reach a consensus on the most appropriate specification that could be recommended for model users. The specification of the above three parameters could lead to "user effects," and are the largest sources of uncertainty in the predicted results from the input parameter specification process for the types of scenarios examined in the benchmark exercise.

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