Becht Nuclear provides immediate, around-the-clock support in helping operating plants resolve mechanical and structural integrity issues in a safe and reliable manner. Becht’s reputation and expert knowledge of the US Nuclear Regulatory Agency (NRC) allows us to be especially well positioned to work with our clients to develop mutually acceptable problem resolutions to keep your plants operating when critical issues develop. Highlights and selected service areas are below:
Nuclear Quality Assurance Program
The QA Program addresses the following codes, standards and regulations:
- ASME NQA‑1
- ASME Section III Division 1 Appendix XXIII
- 10 CFR 50 Appendix B
- 10 CFR 21
ASME / ASCE Codes and Standards
- ASME design reports – Becht Professional Engineers can review and certify ASME III and ASME VIII Div.2 Design Specifications and Design Reports in support of manufacturers and utilities.
- ASME Code Reconciliation – Becht assists owners and operators with reconciling later editions of the code with earlier editions of the code conciliation.
- ASME Section XI Repairs and Replacements – Becht provides immediate support to plant engineers in selecting the most cost-effective and compliant repair alternative, in accordance with good industry practice (ASME XI and Code Cases, ASME PCC-2, EPRI repairs), and regulatory precedent (RG 1.147 and relief requests).
- ASME and ASCE Codes and Standards Support and Interpretations – Understanding and interpreting industry codes and standards and being aware of developments can be the difference between success and failure on critical projects. Becht holds over 125 positions in ASME, ASCE, API, and ASTM codes and standards committees.
- Becht assists customers in operability determinations in several issues including piping leaks, piping vibration problems, water hammer issues, repair or replace decisions, cracked weld evaluations, relief request support, and code case interpretation.
Fitness for Service Evaluations (FFS)
- FFS evaluations support operability determinations about whether to put existing equipment into service. FFS evaluations are typically performed on tanks, vessels, or piping.
- Becht provides expert support to utilities in performing FFE assessment in accordance with NRC Inspection Manual 0326, including Code Case N-513, N-597, N-705, and ASME III Appendix F for safety-related SSCs; and API 579-1/ASME FFS-1 for non-safety related SSCs.
Piping Vibration Troubleshooting and Problem Resolution
- Becht looks for the root cause of piping vibration problems. Through testing monitoring, and analysis, an effective fix to the problem can be implemented.
Evaluation of Design Basis and Beyond Design Basis External Events (wind driven missiles, earthquakes, over pressurization events, explosions)
- Becht has extensive experience in seismic analysis of nuclear structures, systems, and components including fluid-structure interaction and soil-structure interaction. Proven expertise in finite element analysis of highly transient events such as wind-driven missile impacts, hypothetical equipment impacts and evaluation of postulated explosions in piping systems and vessels.
- Becht has performed multiple seismic evaluations for underground waste-storage tanks, including fluid-structure interaction, soil-structure interaction, and advanced finite element analyses.
- Becht has performed stability analysis of spent fuel casks under seismically induced motion in support of nuclear power plant facilities and evaluates floor loads generated by the casks in the facility.
Internal Events Hazards (pipe breaks, pipe whip accidents, LOCAs)
- Becht performs water hammer analysis for a series of postulated pipe breaks (LOCAs) for a nuclear reactor vessel
- Becht supports engineers in design and analysis of high energy line break in accordance with NRC Standard review Plan 3.6 and best practices.
- Becht performs the retrofit review of high energy line breaks for older plants, including review of original design, walkdowns to assess zones of influence, and recommendations for necessary-and-sufficient upgrades.
Water Hammer and Vibration Troubleshooting and Evaluation
- Becht is involved in the evaluation, prevention, and mitigation of water hammer conditions
NRC Regulation Interpretation, Precedents, and Relief Request Support
- Becht supports utilities in their submittal to the NRC for operability determination of degraded or non-conforming ASME equipment and piping, including analysis where necessary and regulatory-compliant relief requests.
Corrosion and Materials Troubleshooting and Support
- Becht has expertise in material selection, materials compatibility, welding and weld quality issues, corrosion assessment and troubleshooting, flow accelerated corrosion (FAC), non-metallic repairs, evaluation and selection of coatings, and failure analysis of metals, plastics, and ceramics.
- Becht has SQUG qualified engineers and has performed numerous walkdowns in nuclear facilities including seismic walkdowns in support of nuclear power plant owner’s review of NRC 50.54(f) submittals to the NRC. Contributing author to DOE manual DOE/EH-0545 entitled Seismic Evaluation Procedure for Equipment in U.S. Department of Energy Facilities and it’s successor, the Department of Energy Handbook, Seismic Evaluation Procedure for Equipment in U.S. Department of Energy Facilities (in preparation).
- Becht engineers have experience in each of the qualification methods for electrical and mechanical equipment.
Fracture Mechanics Analysis
- Becht engineers have developed proprietary fracture mechanics software and employ advanced finite element programs and methods to solve fracture mechanics problems.
Training and Mentoring
With several experts on ASME and ASCE Code Committees, Becht Nuclear Services provides direct and on-line training to nuclear engineering staff in the areas of ASME nuclear systems, structures and components design, analysis, qualification, integrity and operability assessment, and repairs.Contact an expert