Endorsement Review of ASME B&PV Code Section III, Division 5, "High Temperature Reactors"

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Publication of Draft Regulatory Guide 1380 and NUREG-2245

In August 2021, the NRC staff published Draft Regulatory Guide (DG) 1380 (RG 1.87 Revision 2), "Acceptability of ASME Section III, Division 5, High Temperature Reactors," and the technical basis document supporting the regulatory positions in DG-1380, NUREG-2245, "Technical Review of the 2017 Edition of ASME Code, Section III, Division 5, 'High Temperature Reactors,'” for public comment.  The NRC staff evaluated the recommendations in the contractor reports (found below) and used its own independent technical expertise to form the basis for the findings in these reports.

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Background

The NRC staff recognize that the absence of an NRC-endorsed code of construction for nuclear reactors operating above 425°C (800°F) is a significant obstacle for new and advanced nuclear reactor designs. Review and approval of an elevated temperature code of construction during a licensing review of a new nuclear power plant would result in substantial costs and delays.

In a letter dated June 21, 2018, ASME, based on letters from both industry consortia and individual companies interested in developing non-LWR designs, requested that the NRC review and endorse the 2017 Edition of ASME B&PV Code Section III, Division 5 (see also the NRC response letter). Therefore, the NRC has initiated efforts to endorse the ASME B&PV Code Section III, Division 5.

In October 2018, the NRC sent the ASME BPVC Section III, Division 5 standard and the technical background documents to the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), and NUMARK Associates, Inc. for a peer review on the technical adequacy of Section III, Division 5.

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Publicly Available Contractor Reports Evaluated by the NRC

The NRC reviewed recommendations from the following contractor reports in preparing DG-1380 and NUREG-2245.

Author Affiliation Topic Discussion Date Issued
Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Oak Ridge National Laboratory Technical Input for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Review of the 2017 Edition of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, Section III, Division 5, "High Temperature Reactors"

ASME Code Sections:

  • Materials (HBB; HCB; & HGB–2000)
  • Tables and Figures (Mandatory Appendix HBB–I)
  • Guidelines for Restricted Material Specifications (Non-Mandatory Appendix HBB–U)
August 2020
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Technical Input for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Review of the 2017 Edition of ASME Section III, Division 5, "High Temperature Reactors"

ASME Code Sections:

  • Design, Fabrication, Examination, Testing (HBB; HCB; HGB–3000, –4000, –5000, –6000)
  • Rules for Strain, Deformation, and Fatigue Limits (Mandatory Appendix HGB–I)
  • Rules for Construction of Core Support Structures Without Explicit Consideration of Creep and Stress-Rupture (Mandatory Appendix HGB–II)
  • Rules for Buckling and Instability (Mandatory Appendix HGB–III)
  • Rules for Time-Temperature Limits (Mandatory Appendix HGB–IV)
September 2020
NUMARK Associates, Inc.

Engineering Mechanics Corporation of Columbus

Technical Input for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Review of the 2017 Edition of ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, Section III, Division 5, “High-Temperature Reactors” HBB-T, HBB-II, HCB-I, HCB-II, and HCB-III for Metallic Components

ASME Code Sections:

  • Rules for use of SA–533 Type B (Mandatory Appendix HBB–II)
  • Rules for Strain, Deformation, and Fatigue Limits (Nonmandatory Appendix HBB–T)
  • Rules for Stress Range Reduction Factors (Mandatory Appendix HCB–I)
  • Rules for Allowable Stress Values for Class B Components (Mandatory Appendix HCB–II)
  • Rules for Time-Temperature Limits (Mandatory Appendix HCB–III)
December 2020
NUMARK Associates, Inc.

Technical Input for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Review of the 2017 Edition of ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, Section III, Division 5, "High Temperature Reactors": Subsection HH, "Class A Nonmetallic Core Support Structures," Subpart A, "Graphite Materials"

ASME Code Sections:

  • Graphite and Composites (Technical Requirements)
December 2020
NUMARK Associates, Inc.

Engineering Mechanics Corporation of Columbus

Technical Input for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Review of the 2017 Edition of ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, Section III, Division 5, "High-Temperature Reactors." Review of Code Case N-861 and N-862: Elastic-Perfect Plastic Methods for Satisfaction of Strain Limits and Creep-Fatigue Damage Evaluation in BPV-III-5 Rules

ASME Code Sections:

  • Code Case N–861
  • Code Case N–862
December 2020
Argonne National Laboratory

Historical Context and Perspective on Allowable Stresses and Design Parameters in ASME Section III, Division 5, Subsection HB, Subpart B (ANL/AMD-21/1)

The Argonne National Laboratory report references the following report developed by MPR Associates, Inc.

ASME Code Sections:

Provides the NRC with the technical basis and historical perspective on ASME BPVC Section III, Division 5 and the technical assistance to facilitate the staff’s efforts in drafting the RG and technical basis document

March 2021

February 2021

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Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, March 31, 2022