Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Why San Onofre Cannot Safely Be Restarted

The DAB Safety Team's Press Release 10-29-12

The DAB Safety Team has now published the differences in their damage assessment between San Onofre Replacement Steam Generators (RSG’s) Unit 2 and 3, and on the causes of Failure, due to operational parameter’s, that have not been explicitly identified either by SCE, MHI, their Outside Experts’ or the NRC.

San Diego, CA (Oct. 29, 2012) – The DAB Safety Team has just released their analysis of SCE’s SONGS Unit 2 Return to Service Report which is titled:
Overview - Consequences of a Main Steam Line Break, which describes why San Onofre’s RSG’s cannot be safely restarted even at reduced Power.

Additional Documentation:

Thank You
Don Leichtling
- The DAB Safety Team

SCE’s Problem: The DAB Safety Team has concluded that SONGS Unit 2 RSG's suffered moderate damages compared with the severe damages to Unit 3 RSG's. This is because compared with Unit 3, Unit 2 RSGs were determined operating at Higher Secondary Pressures (30-100 psia) and lower reactor thermal power (Unit 3 - 1186 MWe & Unit 2 - 1183 MWe).  This DAB finding was confirmed based on review of Plant Operational Data, Plant System Descriptions, conversations with several anonymous Plant Personnel, Preliminary Engineering Calculations and review of the NRC AIT Report). 

Two Questions Reporters Might Like To Ask:

1.     Did the Region IV NRC AIT Team ask SONGS Engineers and Shift Managers why were they operating unit 3 at lower secondary pressures and higher reactor thermal power levels compared with Unit 2 RSGs. What drove them to make this change?  Did they seek Operations management approval?  Did they understand the implication of this change?  Do they understand now what they did wrong and will they admit it?

2.     Has the NRC checked the SONGS Operational Records and Calculations to independently verify that SONGS Unit 3 RSG’s tubes did not leak because SONGS Unit 3 RSG’s were producing more thermal power than the 3438 MWt allowed by their Technical Specifications.  Was the Net Reactor Thermal Power of 3438 MWt exceeded at any other time(s) in violation of SONGS Technical Specifications?

Note: For additional information and all the future DAB Safety Team's San Onofre Papers just click, then bookmark their TAB located at top of this great Decommission San Onofre website. 

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