491st Meeting - April 12, 2002

               Official Transcript of Proceedings


Title:                    Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards
                               491st Meeting - OPEN SESSION

Docket Number:  (not applicable)

Location:                 Rockville, Maryland

Date:                     Friday, April 12, 2002

Work Order No.: NRC-325                             Pages 408-420

                   NEAL R. GROSS AND CO., INC.
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                               MEETING #491
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                              April 12, 2002
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                            ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND
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                       The ACRS met at the Nuclear Regulatory
           Commission, Two White Flint North, Room T2B3, 11545
           Rockville Pike, at 8:30 a.m., Mario V. Bonaca, Vice
           Chairman, presiding.
                 MARIO V. BONACA, Vice Chairman
                 THOMAS S. KRESS, Member-at-Large
                 F. PETER FORD, Member
                 GRAHAM M. LEITCH, Member
                 DANA A. POWERS, Member
                 VICTOR H. RANSOM, Member
                 STEPHEN L. ROSEN, Member
           COMMITTEE MEMBERS (cont.):
                 WILLIAM J. SHACK, Member
                 JOHN D. SIEBER, Member
                 SHER BAHADUR, Associate Director ACRS/ACNW
                 PAUL A. BOEHNERT, ACRS Staff
                 RALPH CARUSO, ACRS Staff
                 JOE DONOGHUE, ACRS Staff
                 SAM DURAISWAMY, Technical Assistant ACRS/ACNW
                 ED KENDRICK, ACRS Staff
                 HOWARD J. LARSON, Special Assistant ACRS/ACNW
                 TAD MARSH, ACRS Staff
           ALSO PRESENT:
                 FRAN BOLGER, GE
                 ISRAEL NIR, GE
                 DAN PAPPONE, GE
           Meeting Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 411
           General Electric Nuclear Energy topical report
           Constant Pressure Power Uprate
                 Israel Nir . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 416
           Closed Session . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 420
                                                    (8:32 a.m.)
                       VICE CHAIR BONACA:  On the record.  The
           meeting will now come to order.
                       This is the second day of the 491st
           meeting of the Advisory Committee on Reactor
           Safeguards.  During today's meeting the Committee will
           consider the following:  General Electric Nuclear
           Energy topical report Constant Pressure Power Uprate,
           future ACRS activities, report of the Planning and
           Procedure Sub-Committee, reconciliation of ACRS
           comments and recommendations, and proposed ACRS
           reports.  A portion of the meeting may be closed to
           discuss General Electric proprietary information.
                       This meeting is being conducted in
           accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory
           Committee Act.  Mr. Sam Duraiswamy is the designated
           Federal Official for the initial portion of the
                       We have received no written comments or
           requests for time to make oral statements from members
           of the public regarding today's sessions.  A
           transcript of a portion of the meeting is being kept. 
           It is requested that the speakers use one of the
           microphones, identify themselves and speak with
           sufficient clarity and volume so that they can be
           readily heard.
                       We have two new additions to our staff. 
           Mr. Rob Elliott, could you please stand up?  You will
           be with us for two years.  Right?
                       MR. ELLIOTT:  It's going to be on the
                       VICE CHAIR BONACA:  Yes.  He has been with
           the NRC for almost 11 and a half years.  His most
           recent position was as a Technical Reviewer in NRR's
           Plant Systems Branch.  He has also had the lead roles
           in both the Hatch and Duke Power Licensing UL
           Application Reviews.  He's well qualified to be with
                       The other person is Tim Kobetz who is also
           going to be with us for two years.  His most recent
           job with the Agency was as Project Manager with the
           Spent Pure Project Office in NMSS.  Before that he was
           Senior Resident Inspector for two years at the Point
           Beach Nuclear Plant.  So he's also very well qualified
           to be with us.  Welcome to both of you.
                       We are ready to start.  The first topic is
           the General Electric Nuclear Energy topical report,
           Constant Pressure Power Uprate.  The cognizant member
           is Mr. Sieber.
                       MEMBER SIEBER:  Thank you, Mr. Chairman. 
           I think before we begin we have two members with
           potentially conflicts of interest, Dr. Ford and Dr.
           Ransom who would like to make a statement for the
           record to recuse yourself.
                       MR. BOLGER:  I'm a GE retiree.  Therefore
           I declare a conflict of interest.
                       MEMBER RANSOM:  I'm Victor Ransom.  I own
           700 shares of GE stock.  Until I get rid of those I
           guess I should go.  Right now I don't want to get rid
           of them.
                       MEMBER SIEBER:  Okay.  Thank you.  I also
           note from the slides that there is proprietary
           information.  I would request General Electric to let
           me know so that we can close the session and mark the
           transcript accordingly.  Those persons in the room who
           should not have access to proprietary information will
           be requested to step outside for that period of time.
                       As we begin the session, I would note that
           the Thermal Hydrolic Phenomenon Sub-Committee met
           twice to discuss specifically General Electric's
           constant pressure power operate topical report first
           on January 16 through 18 and second on March 6.  We
           have all had some experience at least with the
           concepts because Clinton came very close in its Uprate
           to strictly following what was in the topical report
           and Dresden Quad Cities also used elements of it.
                       From our Sub-Committee meetings, we had a
           couple of issues that we have asked be further
           discussed today so that we can clarify and fill in
           some detail.  The first of those would be directed to
           General Electric which talks about core spray
           effectiveness.  So that we would get a better and
           stronger feel of whether it's adequate or not.
                       The second issue that has come up in
           various power uprates and also in the discussion here
           is more directed to the staff.  It has to do with
           oversight of the reload analysis methodology.  The
           licensee usually through its integral supplier or its
           fuel vendor is required to perform a Reload Safety
           Analysis for every reload and every cycle.  
                       So that they first of all can establish
           and demonstrate that the core as designed and operated
           will meet all the regulatory constraints.  The outcome
           of that is a Reload Safety Analysis and a Core
           Operating Wellness Report.  The Core Operating
           Wellness Report is used in the control room by the
           operators and reactor engineers in order to properly
           operate the core.  
                       On the other hand, neither of these
           documents are submitted to the staff prior to the
           start-up after a refueling outage.  The practice of
           the staff right now is not to audit these reports
                       The Constant Pressure Power Uprate places
           a greater demand on core performance than previously
           existed.  In that we're trying to achieve flux
           flattening to get a higher average power output from
           a core without increasing the peak rod power.  Also in
           a lot of cases it involves a change in the style or
           model of the fuel.  So that you may end up with a
           mixed core of two different types of fuel or a new
           type of fuel for a given cycle.
                       We are concerned that these Core Operating
           Wellness Reports and the Reload Safety Analysis are
           not being reviewed.  We feel that it would be more
           appropriate given the higher demands of the core and
           changes that are occurring during an uprate that the
           staff pay closer attention to these reports for
           transitional cores.
                       With that I think that's enough of an
           introduction, I'll end up using everybody's time. 
           Then we'll have to have a break.  I really don't want
           to do that.  So what I'd like to do now is introduce
           Joe Donoghue.
                       MR. BOEHNERT:  He's not in there.
                       MEMBER SIEBER:  Okay.
                       MR. BOEHNERT:  GE is going first.  He's
           coming later.
                       MEMBER SIEBER:  Okay.
                       MR. NIR:  Good morning.  My name is Israel
           Nir.  I'm representing General Electric.  I'll cover
           the GE BWR Constant Pressure Power Uprate Program. 
           We're also going to cover the core spray topic and
           also some general information on the reload scope just
           to give the Committee maybe a sense of what is
           involved in a standard BWR reload campaign.
                       I have a short open session.  It provides
           some introductory remarks.  Then we'll go into the
           closed session which I'll provide more detail on the
           Constant Pressure Power Uprate Program.  
                       Most of the slides that I will present was
           presented to the Thermal Hydrolic Phenomenon Sub-
           Committee.  So bear with me.  That's actually per
           their request.  Hopefully the second time around will
           be better.
                       We now have extensive analysis experience
           with Extended Power Uprate and growing experience with
           implementation.  The 12 BWRs are now in different
           phases of implementing EPU.  They all were approved to
           implement the EPU.  NRC is now in the process of
           reviewing two additional BWRs.
                       We expect to see additional requests for
           Extended Power Uprate in the coming years.  In
           anticipation for that load, we propose this Constant
           Pressure Power Uprate approach, the CPPU.  It is based
           on our growing experience.  It is focused on the
           potential impacts of the power increase, maintain
           safety margin, facilitate the review and focus the
           documentation of the power increase effects.
                       We met first with the Thermal Hydrolic
           Phenomenon Sub-Committee back in June 2001 to describe
           the approach.  We initiated the interface with the NRC
           back in March 2001.  We submitted the Constant
           Pressure Power Uprate LTR which I will refer to as
                       We received significant feedback on the
           approach in the level of detail.  We then resubmitted
           the CLTR in July 2001.  We received a significant
           number of RAIs that provided I believe some
           significant clarifications on the CLTR.  We submitted
           a RAI Addenda (PH) to the CLTR in December 2001.
                       We met with the Sub-Committee again in
           January to describe the approach.  Clinton made a
           presentation on their program which included some
           elements of CPPU to the Sub-Committee and as a matter
           of fact in March to the full Committee.  We met again
           in March with the Sub-Committee to review the CLTR/CR.
                       I have just a few words on GE Power Uprate
           Program.  It started with a 5 percent Power Uprate
           Program which is a Stretch Power Uprate.  We then
           moved back in '98 to Extended Power Uprate, up to 20
           percent above original license thermal power.  
                       We also have what we call Thermal Power
           Optimization Uprate which is based on the improved
           feedwater flow measurement uncertainty.  It involves
           Power Uprate up to about one and a half percent, not
           exceeding two percent.
                       Finally the last element is the Constant
           Pressure Power Uprate which is associated with no
           pressure increase but as you will see it is actually
           more than that.  It's a more streamlined and
           simplified approach.
                       This is a summary of our Power Uprate
           experience.  You can see on the left hand side that
           initially the Power Uprates were associated with a
           dome pressure increase.  As we move to the right hand
           side, some of the latest five percent Power Uprates
           were associated with no pressure increase.  All of the
           subsequent EPUs are associated with no pressure, dome
           pressure increase.
                       I noted at the bottom that Brunswick Unit
           1 and 2, the effort is in progress.  Actually it's
           under NRC review.  Browns Ferry Units 2 and 3 are also
           in progress.  It will submit in the middle of the
           year.  I believe the target right now is July.
                       Finally this is just a summary of what the
           program has contributed to the electrical grade.  This
           is a summary of the Megawatt Electric added as a
           result of GE BWR Power Uprates.  You can see that the
           light gray is the five percent power, the Stretch. 
           This is a past contribution of 1,000 or so Megawatt
                       You can see that the EPU contribution. 
           This is the licensed EPU still in different phases of
           implementation but it will reach the level equivalent
           of what we've achieved with the Stretch.  In progress
           we have another 540.  What is still on top and
           potentially used in the years to come is about 46
           percent or an additional 2,000 Megawatt Electric.
                       Overall that is as indicated here the
           equivalent of five relatively large BWR plants.  The
           program definitely contributes significant Megawatt
           Electric to electrical grid.  That concludes my
           comments for the open session.  I'm ready now to go to
           the closed session.
                       MEMBER SIEBER:  Can we go to the closed
           session now?
                       (Discussion off the microphones.)
                       MR. BOEHNERT:  Let's go to closed session. 
           No one has to leave apparently.
                       (Whereupon, at 8:47 a.m., the proceedings
           went into Closed Session.) 

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