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Nuclear Safety Cooperation

Support to Ukraine upgrade Rovno 4 etc.

Support to the Ukrainian Regulatory Authority in licensing activity related to the completion and safety upgrading of Rovno

  • Closed
Benefitting Zone
Eastern Europe
€ 1,616,511.50
EU Contribution
Contracted in 1995
Technical Assistance to the Commonwealth of Independent States


Type of activity

Technical Support Organisations



Contracting authority

European Commission

Method of Procurement

Direct Agreement & AV DA


08/01/1996 - 08/05/1998


Nuclear Regulatory Administration (NRA) of Ukraine



Project / Budget year
  • UR9502 Energy Sector Chernobyl / 1995
  • UR9402 Energy Sector 1994 / 1994


This project was the first step in the support to the NRA on the licensing of R4K2, after the project NUCUK9402 (see the relevant PRS). The next steps were funded by the project UK/TS/24 and NUCUK9401 (see the relevant PRS).
The main role of this project was to provide the European Commission and other stakeholders with an assessment on whether the modernisation programmes proposed by the operator (Energoatom) for R4K2 would have led to a safety concept acceptable from a Western safety point of view. Among the stakeholders, the EBRD had some specific nuclear safety requirements listed in its Energy Operations Policy which had to be assessed, as a necessary condition for the approval of the loans.


The following objectives were given to the project, as support to the NRA:

Definition of safety objectives to be met after the implementation of the Modernisation Programmes
Safety evaluation of the Modernisation Programmes proposed by the utilities
Assessment of the utility report on the existing status on the NPPs.
Development of a Licensing procedure
The Consortium was in charge to provide technical safety expertise to the NRA on the basis of application of internationally recognised safety principles (e.g. IAEA-INSAG 3) and codes of practice (e.g IAEA-Safety Guides), and of on the basis of the application of Western European safety practices which were recognised by national regulatory bodies.
In addition to that, in order to provide NRA also with technical evaluation based on the application of Ukrainian regulations, a specific sub-contract was provided by Riskaudit to the Ukrainian Technical Safety Organisation (SSTC).


Riskaudit was acting as a Consultant for a Consortium of European Technical Safety Organizations (TSO' s), including ANPA, Italy, AEA. T, UK, GRS, Germany, IPSN, France.
The evaluation of the K2R4 modernization programme was the result of an iterative process which included two steps of assessment by EU Technical Safety Organizations (TSO) led by RISKAUDIT:

setting the safety objectives (which determine the standards or safety level for the construction, management and operation of K2R4) fully in line with the INSAG 3 principles and approved by NRA
identifying design and operational safety weak points which needed to be corrected to meet these objectives on the basis of the corpus of safety analysis and assessment studies carried out on VVER 1000 reactors by RISKAUDIT , IAEA, WANO, etc.
The adequacy of the measures proposed to cope with the safety issues as well as the consistency of these measures with each other was assessed with reference to the safety practice accepted in EU countries by national regulators on plants licensed for operations.
The time-schedule of implementation of the safety upgrade measures was assessed against criteria reflecting both the expected frequency of the initiating events and their consequences, as per Western practices and IAEA recommendations. As a result, all the most important safety improvements necessary to ensure a acceptable level of safety for the short term operation until completion of the modernization project were to be implemented before start up. The remaining safety improvements of the R4K2 modernization programme were to be implemented during a short period after start up. This would have ensured an acceptable level of safety for longer term operation.
Particular attention was given to checking the quality of construction and fabrication in already built parts of the plants and for manufactured equipment.
The quality of already existing construction and equipment was checked through a series of inspections carried out by the original Ukrainian or Russian suppliers, under Western engineering supervision. Inspection programmes, methods and findings were assessed by the above-mentioned Western TSOs. Furthermore, a specific inspection programme conducted by Western experts was given a precise view of the metallurgical quality of selected assembly of pressurized components. All inspections demonstrated an acceptable or correctable status of the parts that were checked. Relevant quality improvement measures were defined.
The implementation of the proposed measures included in the assessed modernization programmes was expected to lead to a safety level at K2R4 in compliance with the established safety objectives and would be acceptable under Western-type licensing practices. NRA licensing procedures were expected to be changed in order to be consistent with these practices.
The safety assessment report, which was the most important deliverable of the project, presented a safety evaluation of the Basic Design. Its structure consisted of a series of technical chapters, each one linked with a technical area. In each chapter, all corresponding improvement measures were examined.
The general structure of the report was the following:
• Safety issue and detailed proposal of the Basic Design: In this part the weakness were explained in front of Western practices when applicable or in front of expert judgement for VVERs. A short description of each measure was provided, its relation to the safety and the corresponding Riskaudit recommendation, the assessment and the conclusion drawn by Riskaudit.
• Evaluation of the detailed proposal: In this part a review of the Basic Design was carried out against the criteria determined by RISKAUDIT. Some Riskaudit observations were discussed in-depth:
• Comments, recommendations and statements. Generally, at the end of this part Riskaudit statement was provided.
The report concluded that the Basic Design integrated with the proposed measures would have met the proposed safety objectives used in Western countries for NPP design, as recently approved by the national safety authorities.
Detailed recommendations were given in selected areas, such as:

Core Design
Component Integrity
Electrical Systems
Instrumentation and Control
Internal and External Hazards
Systems Analysis
Accident Analysis
Operational Safety
Radiation Protection
4) Comments (Quality of the results, Lesson learnt, Recommendations for follow-up)
The project met the objectives stated in the TORs and represented a major step forward in the review of the proposed design for R4K2 and its safety improvement in relation to the Western standards