Control Rod Malfunction at the NRAD Reactor

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The neutron Radiography Reactor (NRAD) is a training, research, and isotope (TRIGA) reactor located at the INL. The reactor is normally shut down by the insertion of three control rods that drop into the core when power is removed from electromagnets. During a routine shutdown, indicator lights on the console showed that one of the control rods was not inserted. It was initially thought that the indicator lights were in error because of a limit switch that was out of adjustment. Through further testing, it was determined that the control rod did not drop when the scram switch was initially ... continued below

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Maddock, Thomas L. May 1, 2010.

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Description

The neutron Radiography Reactor (NRAD) is a training, research, and isotope (TRIGA) reactor located at the INL. The reactor is normally shut down by the insertion of three control rods that drop into the core when power is removed from electromagnets. During a routine shutdown, indicator lights on the console showed that one of the control rods was not inserted. It was initially thought that the indicator lights were in error because of a limit switch that was out of adjustment. Through further testing, it was determined that the control rod did not drop when the scram switch was initially pressed. The control rod anomaly led to a six month shutdown of the reactor and an in depth investigation of the reactor protective system. The investigation looked into: scram switch operation, console modifications, and control rod drive mechanisms. A number of latent issues were discovered and corrected during the investigation. The cause of the control rod malfunction was found to be a buildup of corrosion in the control rod drive mechanism. The investigation resulted in modifications to equipment, changes to both operation and maintenance procedures, and additional training. No reoccurrences of the problem have been observed since corrective actions were implemented.

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  • PHYSOR,Pittsburgh, PA,05/09/2010,05/14/2010

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  • Report No.: INL/CON-10-17985
  • Grant Number: DE-AC07-05ID14517
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 986963
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1012487

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • May 1, 2010

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Oct. 14, 2017, 8:36 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Nov. 3, 2017, 4:32 p.m.

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Maddock, Thomas L. Control Rod Malfunction at the NRAD Reactor, article, May 1, 2010; Idaho. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1012487/: accessed April 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.