United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Kerite Analysis in Thermal Environment of FIRE (KATE-Fire): Test Results – Final Report (NUREG/CR-7102)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: June 2011
Date Published: December 2011

Prepared by:
S.P. Nowlen and J.W. Brown

Sandia National Laboratories
Risk and Reliability Analysis Dept. 6231
P.O. Box 5800
Albuquerque, NM 87185-0748

Gabriel Taylor, NRC Project Manager

NRC Job Code N6959

Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington DC 20555-0001

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Abstract

This report presents the results of cable functionality tests conducted on the cable product marketed under the trade name Kerite FR. Although Kerite FR is a thermoset polymer, reviews have identified prior tests that documented cable failure at relatively low temperatures compared to other known thermoset insulation materials. Other tests have indicated thermal performance limits consistent with other thermoset insulation materials. Hence, the actual high-temperature electrical performance limits of this material under fire exposure conditions were uncertain. New old stock samples of Kerite cables have been tested as a part of two recent programs. During some, but not all, of these tests, cable failures were observed at relatively low temperatures. Two separate phenomena working in concert, insulation cracking and production of a conductive liquid within the cable, are thought to be the mechanisms responsible for the observed cases of early degradation and failure. This report summarizes the previously available information for this cable product, presents all of the newly developed test data and provides an assessment of the material's fire-exposure electrical performance.

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