NRC further questions AP1000 design

24 May 2011

The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) says it has identified ‘additional technical issues’ in Westinghouse’s amended AP1000 reactor design.

The issues surround the AP1000’s shield building, as well as the peak accident pressures expected within containment. They came to light after NRC staff carried out additional calculations to confirm Westinghouse’s technical analysis of the reactor design.

Westinghouse must resolve the issues before the NRC can give final certification of the design, the agency said.

NRC said 23 May that its staff would examine Westinghouse’s quality assurance and corrective actions programmes as part of an inspection the following week, and that it expected the company to submit additional information by early June.

In a statement Westinghouse said that it would continue to work with the NRC as part of the normal licensing process to address the few remaining issues, none of which are safety significant.

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