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Complex System Simulator For The Time Dependent Simulation Of Nuclear Power Systems

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.136.1 - 4.136.4

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J. Michael Doster

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2477

Complex System Simulator for the Time Dependent Simulation of Nuclear Power Systems

J. Michael Doster

Nuclear Engineering Department North Carolina State University Box 7909 Raleigh, NC 27695


For the past several years, a full plant engineering simulation code has been under development in the Nuclear Engineering Department at North Carolina State University to simulate the dynamic response of Pressurized Water Reactor Systems. The software is used in the Department’s Reactor Systems course, as well as a number of other undergraduate courses to demonstrate the effectiveness of the plants control and protection systems and illustrate transient systems behavior during normal and off-normal operating conditions. The software has served as the basis of a Simulation Laboratory within the Department with the goal of providing a convenient, interactive platform for the design and analysis of reactor systems.


Nuclear power plants are tightly coupled, complex systems. Changes in system parameters (e.g. flows, pressures, temperatures, etc.) at any location within the plant, can feed back affecting the behavior of the reactor core as well as other system components. This is further complicated by differences in plant design leading to completely different responses to the same initiating event. The Nuclear Engineering Department at North Carolina State University (NCSU), offers a senior level Reactor Systems course in which students gain an appreciation for interactions between the various plant components and control systems, eventually leading to the students being able to predict plant response to upset conditions. Historically, instruction involving plant response focused primarily on review of Chapter 15 type transients considered in Safety Analysis Reports, or was centered around class room discussion of “classic” accidents or off normal conditions with limited opportunity for students to engage in “what if ” scenarios. These activities are useful for demonstrating plant response, however Chapter 15 analyses generally are based on worst case assumptions involving limiting events where non-safety grade equipment and most control systems are assumed not to function. While appropriate for assessing safety, these type analyses often do not reflect normal plant response and provide no insight into the function or accident mitigating capabilities of non-safety grade auxiliary systems. Since it is likely that these systems would function under most accident conditions, students have little exposure to a

Doster, J. M. (1999, June), Complex System Simulator For The Time Dependent Simulation Of Nuclear Power Systems Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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