Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Seismic control at every stage of Belarusian nuclear power plant operation

MINSK, 8 November (BelTA) – A local seismic control network will be in use at every stage of operation of the Belarusian nuclear power plant, BelTA learned from Arkady Aronov, Director of the Geophysical Monitoring Center of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, on 8 November. Seismic safety was evaluated among other things when the Belarusian nuclear power plant was subjected to stress tests. The location was evaluated as well as individual components and structures of the nuclear power plant. Two main parameters — operating basis earthquake and safe shutdown earthquake — were taken into account to evaluate seismic safety parameters of the Belarusian nuclear power plant project. “While preparing the report, we held a seminar with European experts and concluded that the work on the national report [to sum up results of the stress tests] should include work relating to the creation of a permanent seismic monitoring network in order to control geodynamic activity in the area of the nuclear power plant. Although Belarus is located in an area with weak geodynamics and can in no way be compared to the conditions the Fukushima nuclear power plant operated in,” noted Arkady Aronov. With this in mind plans have been made to create a local seismic control network. “A temporary network is already in place for the duration of the design and construction stages but later on a network will be in use at every stage of the nuclear power plant's life, including operation and decommissioning. In the course of seismic monitoring parameters will be constantly adjusted so that we could review and ascertain seismic impacts, keep an eye on things, and possess complete routine information about the seismic environment,” explained Arkady Aronov. Results of the stress tests indicate that no major adjustments to the Belarusian nuclear power plant design are necessary. “There are inconsiderable changes. The national report will demonstrate it. All of them will be pertinent to the electric part of the design for the sake of increasing safety margins in case the power plant loses power completely,” explained Alexander Parfenov, Deputy Chief Engineer of the state enterprise Belarusian Nuclear Power Plant.
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