Implications of the Baltimore Rail Tunnel Fire for Full-Scale Testing of Shipping Casks

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The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) does not currently require full-scale physical testing of shipping casks as part of its certification process. Stakeholders have long urged NRC to require full-scale testing as part of certification. NRC is currently preparing a full-scale casktesting proposal as part of the Package Performance Study (PPS) that grew out of the NRC reexamination of the Modal Study. The State of Nevada and Clark County remain committed to the position that demonstration testing would not be an acceptable substitute for a combination of full-scale testing, scale-model tests, and computer simulation of each new cask design prior ... continued below

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14 pages

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Halstead, R. J. & Dilger, F. February 25, 2003.

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Description

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) does not currently require full-scale physical testing of shipping casks as part of its certification process. Stakeholders have long urged NRC to require full-scale testing as part of certification. NRC is currently preparing a full-scale casktesting proposal as part of the Package Performance Study (PPS) that grew out of the NRC reexamination of the Modal Study. The State of Nevada and Clark County remain committed to the position that demonstration testing would not be an acceptable substitute for a combination of full-scale testing, scale-model tests, and computer simulation of each new cask design prior to certification. Based on previous analyses of cask testing issues, and on preliminary findings regarding the July 2001 Baltimore rail tunnel fire, the authors recommend that NRC prioritize extra-regulatory thermal testing of a large rail cask and the GA-4 truck cask under the PPS. The specific fire conditions and other aspects of the full-scale extra-regulatory tests recommended for the PPS are yet to be determined. NRC, in consultation with stakeholders, must consider past real-world accidents and computer simulations to establish temperature failure thresholds for cask containment and fuel cladding. The cost of extra-regulatory thermal testing is yet to be determined. The minimum cost for regulatory thermal testing of a legal-weight truck cask would likely be $3.3-3.8 million.

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14 pages

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  • Waste Management 2003 Symposium, Tucson, AZ (US), 02/23/2003--02/27/2003

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  • Report No.: none
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 827637
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc787039

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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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  • February 25, 2003

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Dec. 3, 2015, 9:30 a.m.

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  • April 26, 2016, 6:55 p.m.

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Halstead, R. J. & Dilger, F. Implications of the Baltimore Rail Tunnel Fire for Full-Scale Testing of Shipping Casks, article, February 25, 2003; Tucson, Arizona. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc787039/: accessed June 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.