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Nuclear Safety Cooperation

U2.01/02 Support to Energoatom for the development and implementation of equipment qualification programmes (PA ref.

Benefitting Zone
Eastern Europe
€ 2,353,522.00
EU Contribution
Contracted in 2005
Technical Assistance to the Commonwealth of Independent States


Type of activity

Design Safety



Contracting authority

European Commission

Method of Procurement

(FR2007) Restricted Call for Tender - External Actions


01/10/2005 - 30/09/2008





Project / Budget year

TACIS 2002 Nuclear Safety Action Programme / 2002


TACIS Design Safety projects were service or consultancy type projects that were able to address research, design and engineering issues. They were usually implemented in such a way that an EU research, design or engineering organisation worked in close collaboration with Beneficiary country counterpart organisations on a specific technical problem. The projects therefore achieved a dual purpose of providing the necessary technical resources to solve the issue of concern whilst at the same time transferring know-how and developing capabilities within the Beneficiary country organisations wherever a lack had been identified. This dual purpose also helped to provide the sustainability of the project benefits that was a major objective of the Tacis programme.


The aim of this project was to assist the Ukrainian operator Energoatom in developing the state of the art equipment qualification (EQ) programmes, methods and procedures that were needed for qualification of nuclear power plant electrical and I&C equipment important to safety. The project activities involved (i) assistance to develop qualification methodologies, safety-assessment methodologies and generic practices for the implementation of safety reassessment program in the Ukrainian NPP units, (ii) training of Ukrainian experts for the use of thermo-hydraulic and seismic calculation codes, (iii) conducting the selected accident analysis and trial equipment qualification cases (by test and analysis), and (iv) review and updating of existing qualification programs in Ukraine.


The most important outcome of this project is that Ukraine has established a comprehensive system for equipment qualification, which in addition to EQ methodologies includes (i) facilities for equipment testing, (ii) training the personnel involved, and (iii) development of methods for testing.
Two Ukrainian NPPs - Rivne and Khmelnitsky were chosen as pilot plants for this project. Their personnel were closely involved in the project activities namely in selecting the plant equipment, plant walkdown, training and type testing.

The project involved the following key areas:

EQ input data
The Consultant performed a comprehensive calculation of environmental parameters together with local subcontractor NPP OSI. The objective of this activity was to calculate precise environmental parameters expected in the containment following design basis accident, including seismic parameters for each pilot site. In addition, the training of Ukrainian experts was performed.
All international codes selected for calculation of environmental and seismic parameters are recognized by Ukrainian regulatory body SNRCU. The Consultant provided these codes temporarily for duration of this project. The Consultant calculated pressure and temperature profiles needed for testing. Maximum temperature following design basis accident (DBA) differs from original design values; it may cause problems to qualify equipment installed during the NPP construction and design according to earlier standards.
Also, newly calculated seismic spectra were higher than originally estimated for both pilot sites. The Consultant used Peak Ground acceleration (PGA) 0.1g, recommended in NUREG and compliant with IAEA requirements.

EQ Programmes

The original equipment list that required qualification was developed by KIEP deign institute. This list was reviewed and compared to similar NPP types operated in Czech Republic (Temelin and Dukovany NPPs). Some small modifications were implemented. Preliminary qualification programmes were developed and updated on environmental data monitored at Czech NPPs.

Qualification methodologies and manuals

The Consultant developed the EQ methodologies based on current international practice and experience. Strong involvement of Ukrainian exerts was maintained in this task. A special attention was given to qualifying the commercial grade equipment (used due to shortage of nuclear grade equipment on the market) of safety related systems, sructures and components (SSCs). It was necessary to prepare a concept how to qualify commercial grade equipment for its use at NPPs.
Total of 9 methodologies were developed within this projects. These methodologies are directly applicable and provide for practical basis that can be directly applicable at NPPs as well as testing laboratories or engineering companies.

Equipment qualification testing

Testing should verify meeting the qualification requirements (the safety margins) for each specific equipment type. There were two organizations identified in Ukraine; the Institute of Metrology in Charkiv for performing the radiation testing, and ARMA factory in Kiev performed all remaining tests such as thermal ageing, seismic tests and LOCA tests.
Important outcome of his activity was constructing the new LOCA testing facility in ARMA factory, which is very specific and complex facility used for the most critical tasks such as the testing. Energoatom closely collaborated with ARMA and provided financial assistance to build it. The LOCA testing facility was built, commissioned in spring 2008, and several type tests were conducted successfully. Contribution of Energoatom in motivating LOCA test facility personnel was remarkable.

The testing involved specimens of safety related cables, connection boxes, MoVs, and relays that were selected for qualification; all this equipment is critical for plant life management. Testing was documented in a number of reports that were developed by organizations involved in the EQ process.

The objective of the project was also to develop a QA culture for the entire qualification process. A quality audit was performed at both testing laboratories. The consultant observed QA of the specific testing process.
Training of Ukrainian personnel involved a lot of resources to train a small group of the Ukrainian experts in various activities of EQ testing. It is therefore fundamental that these personnel will be used for conducting the EQ testing.

Training of Ukrainian experts

The training of Ukrainian specialist was an integrated part of project activities. Since the project start, different training was provided to Ukrainian experts, both in classroom and also on the job training (OJT). The aim of those training courses and seminars was to develop in-house capabilities for performing the equipment qualification after this project is completed, thereby ensuring sustainability of the project results.

The following project seminars and formal training courses have been organized:

A training seminar, “Description of the International Safety Re-assessment Methodologies for the Safe Management of NPP Ageing”.
A technical seminar on “Advanced qualification themes and aging phenomena” has been prepared and performed by the Consortium and the Local Subcontractor.
A training Course “Computer Codes for Seismic Structural Analysis and Generation of Floor Response Spectra” was held in Kiev.
A training Course “Computer Codes for the Calculation of Accident Thermal-Hydraulic and Radiological Conditions in Nuclear Power Plants” was held in Kiev.
On-the-job training on functional tests, thermal ageing and QA audits. Performed at Kiev with the assistance of the main Local Subcontractor and also the involved laboratory which performed the tests.
Technical seminars on “Computer Codes for Seismic Structural Analysis and Generation of Floor Response Spectra” and “Computer Codes for the Calculation of Accident Thermal-Hydraulic and Radiological Conditions in NPPs” were prepared and performed by the Consortium and the Local Subcontractor.
On-the-job trainings were carried out at different places during the project implementation with the aim to transfer necessary technical know how and train Ukrainian experts so that they can perform equipment qualification activities in local laboratories on their own. The following trainings were organized:

On the job training course on conducting the Seismic testing for Ukrainian specialists at Local Subcontractor headquarters and Kiev selected seismic laboratory,
A training course in accident test was given in Madrid, Coordinator headquarters, using LOCA facility in April 21st -24th, 2008.
Two other training courses were held in LOCA facilities in Kiev during May 26th – 29th and June 25th - 27th, 2008 with attendance of Ukrainian NPP representatives and staff of other Ukrainian support companies.
Comments (Quality of the results, Lesson learnt, Recommendations for follow-up)

This project helped improving the Ukrainian regulatory framework; EQ requirements were directly included in latest revision of standard OPB 2000/2008 "Rules for design and operation" which is consistent with the IAEA safety Standards. Specific Ukrainian standards related to EQ are generally consistent with international practice and IAEA Safety Standards. Some changes were recommended in particular including EQ requirements for mild environment (during normal operation-long term mild environment impact, to simulate the ageing effect). In addition IEC and IEEE standards applicable to EQ were used.

This project started in parallel with Energoatom initiative on EQ. It was therefore useful having the Consultant’s view on the subject and correct existing EQ requirements and procedures. As a result, the existing plant qualification programmes were reviewed and updated. This project contributed to develop a system to implement and perform EQ in compliance with international requirements.

The EQ methodologies developed in this project allowed Energoatom to update the existing EQ programmes as well as updating standards related to EQ. In addition, the three new standards are being developed that will stipulate environmental parameters, seismic and QA requirements for equipment qualification.

Involvement of local testing facilities was very important. The newly installed LOCA testing facility at ARMA laboratories in Kiev was used for equipment type testing and training of personnel under the Consortium leadership. Several tenders were initiated to perform equipment qualification at Ukrainian NPPs; therefore, both testing laboratories built in this project will be very busy in next years.

Both the End User and the Consortium expressed their satisfaction with project results. The European Commission appreciated good collaboration among project stakeholders as well as positive and valuable outcomes that are directly applicable for Ukrainian NPPs.

The main project achievement was that the Energoatom and NPPs have elaborated the equipment qualification documentation, which is state of the art, properly structured, homogeneous, completed, adapted to European requirements, and in line with qualification requirements in force in Ukraine.