The NRC Staff held a public meeting on December 12 at its headquarters in Rockville, Maryland, to discuss subsequent license renewal (SLR) lessons learned. This was the second such meeting this year, with a third planned for early 2020.
The purpose of the meeting was to discuss comprehensive lessons learned regarding key technical issues common to the first three SLR applications submitted to the agency for review and approval. Ultimately, the objective is to update and clarify NRC’s SLR regulatory guidance documents, capturing key lessons learned and further ensuring a review process that is both effective and efficient for future applicants. At the outset of the meeting, the NRC Staff made clear that the next planned meeting will focus on process-related improvements and lessons learned.
Earlier this month, NRC issued the first SLR licenses, extending Turkey Point’s previously renewed operating licenses from 60 to 80 years. The NRC noted that this is the first such extension not only in the United States, but globally. Moreover, it issued the SLR licenses commensurate with its announced 18-month review schedule. The December 12 lessons-learned meeting focused on identifying and understanding the bases for further clarifying and streamlining the review process applicable to key technical issues associated with, for example:
- electrical insulation and cable connections;
- reactor pressure vessel steel supports;
- PWR vessel internals;
- steam generator divider plates; and
- buried and underground piping and tanks.
The Staff thanked all of the meeting participants for their input and ideas. It will now focus on the nature of and schedule for issuance of the enhancements to its technical guidance for SLR. We will continue to monitor developments in this area, as well the future lessons learned meeting on SLR process improvements.