United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Probabilistic Safety Analysis Procedures Guide (NUREG/CR-2815, BNL-NUREG-51559)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: September 1983
Date Published:
January 1984

Prepared by:
I.A. Papazoglou, R.A. Bari, A.J. Buslik, R.E. Hall, D. Ilberg,
P.K. Samanta, T. Teichmann, and R.W. Youngblood, Brookhaven National Laboratory
A. El-Bassioni, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
J. Fragola and E. Lofgren, Science Applications, Inc.
W. Vesely, Battelle Columbus Laboratories

Department of Nuclear Energy
Brookhaven National Laboratory
Upton, NY 11973

Prepared for:
Division of Safety Technology
Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

NRC FIN A-3382

Availability Notice


A procedures guide for the performance of probabilistic safety assessment has been prepared for interim use in the Nuclear Regulatory Commission programs. It will be revised as comments are received, and as experience is gained from its use. The probabilistic safety assessment studies performed are intended to produce probabilistic predictive models that can be used and extended by the utilities and by NRC to sharpen the focus of inquiries into a range of issues affecting reactor safety. This guide addresses the determination of the probability (per year) of core damage resulting from accident initiators internal to the plant and from loss of offsite electric power. The scope includes analyses of problem-solving (cognitive) human errors, a determination of importance of the various core damage accident sequences, and an explicit treatment and display of uncertainties for the key accident sequences. Ultimately, the guide will be augmented to include the plant-specific analysis of in-plant processes (i.e., containment performance) and the risk associated with external accident initiators, as consensus is developed regarding suitable methodologies in these areas. This guide provides the structure of a probabilistic safety study to be performed, and indicates what products of the study are essential for regulatory decision making. Methodology is treated in the guide only to the extent necessary to indicate the range of methods which is acceptable; ample reference is given to alternative methodologies which may be utilized in the performance of the study.

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