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Spent Fuel Pool Monitoring

Simple monitoring that simply works. 

Safety is at the core of everything we do at Westinghouse, and we’re proud to help our customers around the globe keep their plants running safely and efficiently. Throughout our history we have developed solutions that have helped to continually improve the safety of operating plants. The safety advancements that we’ve introduced to the industry have often been based on relatively simple concepts, and the Westinghouse Spent Fuel Pool Instrumentation System (SFPIS) is one of our latest examples. We responded to industry requirements for reliable spent fuel pool monitoring in beyond design-basis scenarios by developing a simple system that simply works.

In a nuclear power plant, the nuclear fuel that is no longer usable for generating electricity is removed from the plant and stored in large pools of water. Spent nuclear fuel still contains a significant amount of energy, although it’s not useful for the purpose of generating electricity, although it could be reprocessed for that purpose in the future. The spent fuel is removed from the plant during scheduled outages and stored in spent fuel pools on site. The water in the pool keeps the spent fuel cool and safe.

One of the recent lessons learned from industry events is that without knowledge of the spent fuel pool water level during an accident at the plant site, valuable resources can be diverted to address a problem that doesn’t exist. This is why nuclear plant operators around the world are installing level measurement devices that can indicate the water level above the spent fuel during an accident condition.

“Westinghouse responded to this market need by developing a system based on Guided Wave Radar technology that reliably monitors the spent fuel pool water level under adverse environmental conditions,” said Jayne Boynton, Product Technology Manager for the project at Westinghouse. “This monitoring capability is essential to understanding the water level in the spent fuel pool and the corresponding prioritization of actions that plant staff can take to mitigate water inventory loss.”

The Westinghouse SFPIS is a simple system that is easy to install, and easy to maintain, with no active components needed in or above the spent fuel pool. “Our customers are coming to Westinghouse for this, said Boynton. “In fact, we have more than 55 percent of the market share for this type of system in the United States.”

With more than 20 systems installed, Westinghouse is leading the way in helping our utility customers meet this important industry requirement.
To learn more about the Westinghouse SFPIS, contact Jayne Boynton at +1-412-374-4850.