Reactor control system upgrade for the McClellan Nuclear Radiation Center Sacramento, CA.

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Argonne National Laboratory is currently developing a new reactor control system for the McClellan Nuclear Radiation Facility. This new control system not only provides the same functionality as the existing control system in terms of graphic displays of reactor process variables, data archival capability, and manual, automatic, pulse and square-wave modes of operation, but adds to the functionality of the previous control system by incorporating signal processing algorithms for the validation of sensors and automatic calibration and verification of control rod worth curves. With the inclusion of these automated features, the intent of this control system is not to replace ... continued below

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23 p.

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Power, M. A. March 10, 1999.

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Description

Argonne National Laboratory is currently developing a new reactor control system for the McClellan Nuclear Radiation Facility. This new control system not only provides the same functionality as the existing control system in terms of graphic displays of reactor process variables, data archival capability, and manual, automatic, pulse and square-wave modes of operation, but adds to the functionality of the previous control system by incorporating signal processing algorithms for the validation of sensors and automatic calibration and verification of control rod worth curves. With the inclusion of these automated features, the intent of this control system is not to replace the operator but to make the process of controlling the reactor easier and safer for the operator. For instance, an automatic control rod calibration method reduces the amount of time to calibrate control rods from days to minutes, increasing overall reactor utilization. The control rod calibration curve, determined using the automatic calibration system, can be validated anytime after the calibration, as long as the reactor power is between 50W and 500W. This is done by banking all of the rods simultaneously and comparing the tabulated rod worth curves with a reactivity computer estimate. As long as the deviation between the tabulated values and the reactivity estimate is within a prescribed error band, then the system is in calibration. In order to minimize the amount of information displayed, only the essential flux-related data are displayed in graphical format on the control screen. Information from the sensor validation methods is communicated to the operators via messages, which appear in a message window. The messages inform the operators that the actual process variables do not correlate within the allowed uncertainty in the reactor system. These warnings, however, cannot cause the reactor to shutdown automatically. The reactor operator has the ultimate responsibility of using this information to either keep the reactor operating or to shut the reactor down. In addition to new developments in the signal processing realm, the new control system will be migrating from a PC-based computer platform to a Sun Solaris-based computer platform. The proven history of stability and performance of the Sun Sohuis operating system are the main advantages to this change. The I/O system will also be migrating from a PC-based data collection system, which communicates plant data to the control computer using RS-232 connections, to an Ethernet-based I/O system. The Ethernet Data Acquisition System (EDAS) modules from Intelligent Instrumentation, Inc. provide an excellent solution for embedded control of a system using the more universally-accepted data transmission standard of TCP/IP. The modules contain a PROM, which operates all of the functionality of the I/O module, including the TCP/IP network access. Thus the module does not have an internal, sophisticated operating system to provide functionality but rather a small set hard-coded of instructions, which almost eliminates the possibility of the module failing due to software problems. An internal EEPROM can be modified over the Internet to change module configurations. Once configured, the module is contacted just like any other Internet host using TCP/IP socket calls. The main advantage to this architecture is its flexibility, expandability, and high throughput.

Physical Description

23 p.

Notes

INIS; OSTI as DE00010986

Medium: P; Size: 23 pages

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  • 8th Topical Meeting on Robotics and Remote Systems, Pittsburgh, PA (US), 04/25/1999--04/29/1999

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  • Report No.: ANL/NT/CP-97369
  • Grant Number: W-31109-ENG-38
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 10986
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc619351

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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

  • March 10, 1999

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • April 10, 2017, 3:57 p.m.

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Power, M. A. Reactor control system upgrade for the McClellan Nuclear Radiation Center Sacramento, CA., article, March 10, 1999; Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc619351/: accessed October 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.