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Services & Experience

ONR “Safety Assessment Principles for Nuclear Facilities” 

Equipment Qualification (EQ) and the procedures for achieving it, should be applied… 

“…to confirm that structures, systems and components will perform their allocated safety function(s) in all normal operational, fault and accident conditions identified in the safety case and for the duration of their operational lives.” 

ONR, “Safety Assessment Principles for Nuclear Facilities”. 2014 Edition Chapter ENGINEERING PRINCIPLES – EQU – Equipment Qualification 

EQ Services Alliance - our wide-ranging facilities and capabilities

With specialist testing facilities and expertise in the UK and in Europe, the EQ Services Alliance provides customers with:

  • Cost-effective advice on achieving EQ and ‘getting it right first time’

  • Expertise in international regulations and applicable standards (e.g. EPRI, IEEE, IEC, RCC-E, EN 60068, ASME NQA-1, RCC-M) – gained through active participation in standards committees
    and long-term relationships with international regulators

  • Extensive experience with the Nuclear Industry Smart Instruments Working Group (NISIWG) approach to smart device justification – based on a two-legged approach of ‘production excellence’ and ‘independent confidence building measures’ (use of the EMPHASIS tool to support the production excellence leg)

  • Accelerated ageing tests on materials and equipment, including:

  • Thermal; cycling, ageing, shock and relative humidity, including bespoke chambers large
    and small

  • Mechanical; vibration and shock testing on largest commercially available electrodynamic shakers

  • Irradiation; Co-60 gamma and simulated neutron damage, including irradiation at temperature

  • Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC)

  • Seismic; tri-axial 3m   table, with Finite Element support

  • Thermodynamic Accidental Conditions / Design Basis Events

  • Materials and equipment qualification with independent 3rd party QA/QC compliance assessments, including auditing and inspection services

  • A full range of testing facilities for mechanical and corrosion resistance property determination, for example fracture toughness – specialists in high temperature materials testing

  • Expert management of planning, performing and recording of lifetime data to maintain validity of safety case throughout operational life (in accordance with regulatory requirements)

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EQ Services Alliance – our collective experience

Over 30 years of internationally leading expertise on the radiation and thermal degradation of materials such as elastomers, thermoplastics and particularly cable insulator materials.

  • In-depth knowledge of qualification of materials and equipment to globally recognised
    standards such as IEEE, IEC and ASME, with active participation on these international standard   committees

  • Achieving qualification through analysis of over 30 years of data on polymeric materials, as well as ageing modelling and irradiation testing programmes for NPP equipment (e.g. actuators, valves, pumps) in a unique Co-60 Irradiation Cell Facility

  • Achieving qualification of Structures, Systems & Components (SSC) through dynamic and seismic analysis using a range of techniques/analyses (linear, non-linear, soil structure interaction, vibration, blast, impact) and software (e.g. ANSYS, LS-DYNA, ABAQUS, NASTRAN, SASSI)

  • Bespoke testing programmes and rig build to provide Design Basis Event testing on components,
    such as materials for pumps inside containment buildings, including the use of large high
    temperature thermal chambers

  • Expertise in plant operation and maintenance, including seismic assessment consultancy, 
    plant walk-downs, maintenance schedules, preservation of qualification through in-depth knowledge
    of technical specifications and functional testing (for example, fuelling machine
     valves); cost-effective ageing and obsolescence management, non-destructive baselining of equipment, and helping to achieve life extension

  • Extensive world-class qualification expertise supporting all reactor technology types (e.g. HTR, PWR, BWR, Fast Reactors) on long term thermal and oxidation ageing performance of a range of materials, including in-depth expertise in, but not limited to, fracture toughness, corrosion fatigue, corrosion degradation mechanisms, oxidation, including access to years of data

  • Extensive experience of the qualification of EC&I equipment, including Programmable Electronic   Systems and SMART instruments in line with SC45a standards for Class / probabilistic targets and IEC Safety Integrity Levels (SILs)

  • Unrivalled experience working with a range of Nuclear Site Licensees in the application of both client specific qualitative and quantitative assessment techniques and cross nuclear industry approaches in line with established Technical Assessment Guide

  • Extensive facilities covering a range of CE testing services and CE Notified Body certification

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