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Replacement of steam generator safety valves (unit 3)

Replacement of steam generator safety valves (unit 3)


1) Background
Previous SG (steam generator) safety valves experienced several design shortcomings:

  • No qualification under water and steam-water mixture: operating reliability is not guaranteed, inducing a risk of stuck open or closed valve,
  • Availability of spare parts is not guaranteed, as supplier is not existing any more,
  • Difficulties in maintenance and in adjusting opening/closing set points,
  • Deviation from Ukrainian regulations.

These points led to the need for replacement of SG safety valves at Rovno NPP.
2) Objectives
The present TACIS project U1.01/96A aims at replacing the 8 SG safety valves (2 per SG). The new safety valves should have the following functions:

  • High level of reliability for opening and closing,
  • Qualification to all fluids, which can go through SG safety valves: steam, water, steam-water mixture,
  • Ability to withstand water hammer load in case of overfilling of SG,
  • Automatic opening and closing, with good accuracy of set points,
  • Ability to open/close SG steam valves from main control room for feed and bleed.

3) Project results–achievements
Preparatory phase:
Technical specifications and tender dossier were prepared by OSA utility EDF (Electricit de France) in the frame of general OSA contract U1.01/95. These TS were prepared in close cooperation with Rovno NPP and Energoatom.
Invitation to tender was launched on 20th May 1998, and technical tender evaluation took place in September 1998. Financial evaluation took place in July 1999.
Then, French company SEBIM was selected, and supply contract was signed 9th February 2000.
Implementation of the supply contract:
Tasks to be performed by the contractor were the following:

  • Establishment of a work plan and a quality assurance plan
  • Studies for implementation of the detailed design of new safety valves
  • Writing and delivery of design and operational documentation
  • Manufacturing of new safety valves
  • Supply of safety valves at Rovno NPP
  • Certification and support to licensing
  • Supervision of on-site installation
  • Testing and commissioning
  • Warranty period.

Other partners have been involved in the implementation of the project, outside contractor’s scope:

  • Rovno NPP: validation of all steps of the project, installation, commissioning, licensing,
  • Energoatom: validation of all steps of the project, licensing,
  • KIEP: studies of integration of new safety valves to Rovno NPP systems,
  • EDF (OSA utility): general follow-up of the project, and general support, in the frame of general OSA contract U1.01/96,
  • UNRA + Riskaudit: licensing.

Note: "2+2 approach" has been used during implementation phase of the contract, i.e. support of an Eastern plant by a Western Utility and parallel support of the Eastern NRA by a Western TSO in the same projects. Thus, consortium Riskaudit supported UNRA during this project, and attended a number of meetings during this project.
Time schedule of implementation phase:

  • 9th February 2000: supply contract signature
  • Project kick-off meeting at Rovno NPP in February 2000
  • Manufacturing of safety valves completed in December 2000
  • Factory acceptance tests at SEBIM facilities in February 2001
  • Certification of the safety valves issued in July 2001
  • Delivery of SEBIM safety valves at Rovno NPP in May 2001
  • Installation of safety valves on unit 3 in December 2001 – January 2002
  • Provisional acceptance of safety valves was issued on 13th February 2002
  • 1-year warranty period run without problems. Final acceptance was signed in February 2003.

Technical description of the supply:
Rovno NPP unit 3 has 4 SG. Each SG is equipped with 2 safety valves.
Selected contractor SEBIM proposed a technology of safety valves with a single main valve equipped with a spring (normal mechanical opening/closure) and a pilot valve (small valve motored by steam of main valve: this pilot valve actuates itself main valve).
In case of steam pressure increase, pilot valve detects this steam pressure increase and, at a certain threshold, actuates the opening of main valve. Once steam depressurisation reaches another threshold, pilot valve actuates the re-closure of main valve. This gives a high accuracy and a high reliability of opening and closure.
In addition, SEBIM valves are qualified for any fluid, which the safety valve could contain (steam, water, steam-water mixture).
SG safety valves are equipped with a remote control system: they can be opened/closed from main and emergency control rooms, in order to perform feed and bleed when requested by accident management procedures.
Ukrainian side requested the installation of an additional system of electrical opening/closure of SG safety valves. It consists in the installation of pressure sensors and an I&C box for opening/closing safety valves at certain thresholds.
SG safety valves are designed and manufactured to withstand design basis seismic loads, and are classified for safety.
4) Comments
The implementation phase has been performed on schedule.
Some minor problems occurred during implementation of the project:

  • Ukrainian representatives requested an additional system of electrical opening/closure of SG safety valves during implementation, when it was not mentioned in TS or in contract. This led to the supply of additional equipment: SEBIM provided this extra equipment without extra cost (more than 3 km cables), and EDF financed additional sensors.
  • During commissioning of one valve, a pilot valve was found failed. It was replaced by SEBIM without extra cost, in conformance with the contract. These safety valves were the first-of-a-kind at SEBIM for such a size of valves (flow rate of each safety valve is 850 tons/h, as previously designed and installed valves were 250 tons/h).

Further information
Further information on the project results could be sought from Energoatom and Rovno NPP.
The Project Final report is available at the JRC-IE archive.

General Information

Replacement of steam generator safety valves (unit 3)
€ 811.837,00
Budget year: 
Types of activities: 
Equipment Supply
Duration (months): 
Contracting authority: 
Partner (Beneficiary): 
Old reference: 
EuroPA 97-0585 (contract PA)
Project reference: 
Decision number: 
multi annual
Method of procurement: 
Special Fund (Procurement Agent)
Procurement Agent contract: 
EuroPA 97-0585 (contract PA)
Procurement Agent reference: 
wo08 PL2 061/NSP/ROVNO/Sebim
Procurement Agent provisional acceptance: 
Procurement Agent Final acceptance: 
Signature date: 
Effective contract date: 
Contract end date: 
Closure date: 
Contract Documents: