Within the scope of the TACIS 92 Programme, the EC and the Russian Ministry of Atomic Power (Minatom) agreed on a list of nuclear power plants and of projects for each plant aimed at improving the operational safety of these plants. This part of the TACIS programme was called "TACIS 92 on-site activities".
For each selected plant an EU nuclear operator was to set up a team to work with the Russian End User (Smolensk NPP). In the present case this was performed by British Energy (at that time Scottish Nuclear - the Consultant).
The object of the present project was to implement the on-site activities at Smolensk NPP; these activities by the Consultant being the subject of formal contracts between the EC and the Consultant.
The work was split into two phases.
The first task (Phase 1) included a mission to the site to examine with the End User a detailed description of the selected projects, establish the general schedule and work plan and the Consultant's manpower requirement, and collect all information necessary to start the work on-site as quickly as possible. This was essentially the preparation for the main On Site Assistance contract, which would be implemented under Phase 2.
After having performed the tasks of Phase 1, the Consultant would establish his on site team to start the implementation of the agreed projects, which included equipment supply projects as well as the provision of general operational support to the End User.
The activities to be performed included:
- Definition of safety deficiencies;
- Proposal for remediation with or without further financial EC support;
- Definition of project proposals for EC to seek financial support for the selected project(s);
- Preparation of “Technical Specifications”(TS) for equipment supply projects, when a project has been adopted by EC and Minatom;
- Preparation of “Technical Terms of Reference” (TOR) for service projects, if considered necessary;
- Assistance to EC and Beneficiary in the procurement process to purchase the equipment;
- Assistance in the implementation / installation of procured equipment.
- General operational safety assistance to the End User.
The present contract covered Phase 2 described above. The contract was signed on 29 December 1994 and was completed by 28 February 1997.
The project was launched as a follow-up to the Phase 1 on-site assistance activities. This Phase 2 consisted of general on-site assistance as well as the implementation of specific projects defined during Phase 1.
Those specific projects were:
- the delivery and installation of the operation and maintenance information system GOMIS (R1.05/92A).
- the delivery of manual NDT equipment (R1.05/92B),
The second specific project listed above (R1.05/92B) was Part 1 of a two part approach to the improvement of NDT activities at Smolensk NPP. Part 2 of the approach was performed by a Working Party set up by the Consultant with other members coming from the End User, the Beneficiary (Rosenergoatom) and NIKIET (RBMK designer). The objectives of Part 2 were:
- to perform an assessment of the NDT procedures and equipment used at Smolensk NPP, with comparison with European standards.
- to develop proposals for enhanced or new automated NDT techniques.
- to report on possible projects which would be suitable for future donor (including TACIS) funding.
The output from this study led to the later TACIS project R1.05/94A.
In addition to the specific projects implemented under the current contract, the Consultant also performed the scoping exercise for near future (TACIS 1993/1994) specific on-site projects, which included:
- R 1.05/94 A - NDT and ISI
- R 1.05/94 B - System for diagnostic of electrical motor driven valves
- R 1.05/94 C - Access control (transformed later to an independent project)
- R 1.05/94 D - Replacement of main safety valves.
The project started smoothly and in a good co-operation with the project partner. The assistance work was performed in accordance with the TOR.
The NDT project was carried out as planned within the duration of the contract, whereas the implementation of the GOMIS project met several problems which delayed its implementation. Only the first phase of the GOMIS project, system development and data preparation, could be carried out within this contract. The second phase, procurement of the required hardware, was completed under a follow-on contract.