Benefits of Seismic Isolation for Nuclear Structures Subjected to Severe Earthquake
Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
The Fukushima accident has reiterated that the seismic safety is a clear necessity in the design of nuclear power plants. To overcome the weaknesses of the plant design, appropriate measures or interventions have thus to be put in place to improve the nuclear safety. In this study, seismic isolation, widely adopted for conventional constructions, is considered as retrofit measure to provide superior performance of plant itself, even when exceptional events occur. In this paper, we numerically
... r, we numerically investigate the dynamic behaviour of a Small Modular Reactor (SMR) plant subjected to 0.6g PGA; in doing that time-history analysis has been performed assuming the reactor building with and without isolators. For that purpose, a suitable FEM model has been implemented to provide in-structure response spectra at safety relevant locations and subsystem supports. Adequate steel and concrete properties as well as isolators properties, experimentally determined, have been assumed. Results have shown the benefits of seismic isolation for NPP that can so sustain levels of loading beyond the design input and demonstrated that failure of an isolation system cannot occur before failure of the isolated structure. However, the large horizontal displacements of the structure require appropriate considerations in the layout and interfaces for interconnected systems.