§ 55.46 Simulation facilities.

(a) General. This section addresses the use of a simulation facility for the administration of the operating test and plant-referenced simulators to meet experience requirements for applicants for operator and senior operator licenses.

(b) Commission-approved simulation facilities and Commission approval of use of the plant in the administration of the operating test. (1) Facility licensees that propose to use a simulation facility, other than a plant-referenced simulator, or the plant in the administration of the operating test under §§ 55.45(b)(1) or 55.45(b)(3), shall request approval from the Commission. This request must include:

(i) A description of the components of the simulation facility intended to be used, or the way the plant would be used for each part of the operating test, unless previously approved; and

(ii) A description of the performance tests for the simulation facility as part of the request, and the results of these tests; and (iii) A description of the procedures for maintaining examination and test integrity consistent with the requirements of § 55.49.

(2) The Commission will approve a simulation facility or use of the plant for administration of operating tests if it finds that the simulation facility and its proposed use, or the proposed use of the plant, are suitable for the conduct of operating tests for the facility licensee's reference plant under § 55.45(a).

(c) Plant-referenced simulators. (1) A plant-referenced simulator used for the administration of the operating test or to meet experience requirements in § 55.31(a)(5) must demonstrate expected plant response to operator input and to normal, transient, and accident conditions to which the simulator has been designed to respond. The plant-referenced simulator must be designed and implemented so that it:

(i) Is sufficient in scope and fidelity to allow conduct of the evolutions listed in §§ 55.45(a)(1) through (13), and 55.59(c)(3)(i)(A) through (AA), as applicable to the design of the reference plant.

(ii) Allows for the completion of control manipulations for operator license applicants.

(2) Facility licensees that propose to use a plant-referenced simulator to meet the control manipulation requirements in § 55.31(a)(5) must ensure that:

(i) The plant-referenced simulator utilizes models relating to nuclear and thermal-hydraulic characteristics that replicate the most recent core load in the nuclear power reference plant for which a license is being sought; and

(ii) Simulator fidelity has been demonstrated so that significant control manipulations are completed without procedural exceptions, simulator performance exceptions, or deviation from the approved training scenario sequence.

(3) A simulation facility consisting solely of a plant-referenced simulator must meet the requirements of paragraph (c)(1) of this section and the criteria in paragraphs (d)(1) and (4) of this section for the Commission to accept the plant-referenced simulator for conducting operating tests as described in § 55.45(a) of this part, requalification training as described in § 55.59(c)(3) of this part, or for performing control manipulations that affect reactivity to establish eligibility for an operator's license as described in § 55.31(a)(5).

(d) Continued assurance of simulator fidelity. Facility licensees that maintain a simulation facility shall:

(1) Conduct performance testing throughout the life of the simulation facility in a manner sufficient to ensure that paragraphs (c)(2)(ii), as applicable, and (d)(3) of this section are met. The results of performance tests must be retained for four years after the completion of each performance test or until superseded by updated test results;

(2) Correct modeling and hardware discrepancies and discrepancies identified from scenario validation and from performance testing;

(3) Make results of any uncorrected performance test failures that may exist at the time of the operating test or requalification program inspection available for NRC review, prior to or concurrent with preparations for each operating test or requalification program inspection; and

(4) Maintain the provisions for license application, examination, and test integrity consistent with § 55.49.

[66 FR 52667, Oct. 17, 2001]

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Wednesday, March 24, 2021