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ASME Section XI Meeting Notes - September 2002

Site Updates


Prepared By: Dajun Song and Jerry Crider

Company: Progress Energy

Meeting Dates: September 9 - September 12, 2002

Meeting Location: Hollywood, Florida


Meeting Notes

General Announcements

1. Next Section XI meeting is in Orlando, FL. The meeting dates 12/09/02 – 12/12/02. The Wyndham Palace, (407) 827-2727. $139.00/night. Please make your reservations by 11/17/02.

2. NRC Report

  • IST/NRC Symposium in Washington, DC on 7/15/03 - 7/17/03.
  • ISI/NRC Symposium in Washington, DC scheduled for July 2003 has been cancelled. It will be rescheduled for July 2004. Meanwhile, there is a PVP conference in Cleveland, OH (July 2003). ASME XI will try to have a separate session for ISI. Asking for papers to present.
  • Draft proposed regulation (10 CFR50.69) is out for public comment. This regulation is titled, "Risk-Informed Treatment of Structures, Systems and Components." This proposed regulation would greatly reduce some current regulatory requirements for Risk-Informed Safety Class (RISC) 3 & 4 components. The following requirements would be exempted; Part 21, EQ, IST/ISI/R&R requirements for ASME Class 2 and 3 components, Appendix B, Appendix J (Type B and C for both Options A and B), and Appendix A to Part 100. This regulation has huge potential for cost savings to utilities, if you choose to embrace Risk-Informed technology.
  • Final rule (50.55a) is published.
  • Final Code Case Regulatory Guide will be published end of 2002.

3. The Code is going metric. Any code action item going to SCXI beginning in December has to have metric and English units. It will be a "hard" conversion. Conversion standard will be mailed out to the code committee members. The goal is to have metric units appear starting with 2004 Edition.

4. ASME XI was asked by the NRC to codify boric acid inspections (i.e. incorporating GL 88-05 into the Code). New TG is being formed to accomplish this task. I was asked to participate. This TG will report to WGISO. The chairman is Todd Anselmi of Wolf Creek.

5. TG on Cast Stainless Steel. Industry held a conference call. Will try to resolve this issue ASAP.

6. Code Committee is looking at situations where the Code Committee approves and publishes a Code Case that the NRC does not like. In the future, the Code Committee will consider NRC comments/position when taking code action.

7. In the future, there will be 1 Code Edition and 2 Code Addendum.

8. ASME Web site. Password is required to access 2nd tier of ASME web page.

Code Committee Protocol

A quick lesson on code committee protocol. Typically, a code item starts at Task Group (TG) level and must work its way through BNCS before it gets published. Here is the pecking order.

TG – Task Group

WG – Working Group

SG – Subgroup

SC XI – Subcommittee Section XI

MC – Main Committee (Items can still pass with 3 negative votes if it’s a "second
consideration" vote.)

BNCS – Board of Nuclear Codes and Standards

Some popular "Groups";

TGISIO – ISI Optimization

WGISC – Inspection of Systems and Components

WGRBI – Risk Based Inspection

WGPT – Pressure Test

WGIWE/IWL – Containment

WGGR – General Requirements

SGWCS – Water Cooled Systems

SGNDE – Nondestructive Evaluation

SGRRM – Repair, Replacement, and Modifications

SGES – Evaluations and Standards

SCXI - Subcommittee Section XI

Code Committee Items

1. Task Group on Alternative NDE Methods for Repair/Replacement/Modification (RRM) Activities. The TG decided to pursue an ASME XI Code Case. This is a departure from last meeting. There are six issues that need to be resolved. They are:

  • Exam volume. Section XI and Section III for welds requiring XI preservice exam. Only Section III for welds not requiring XI preservice exam.
  • Material. Exclude cast stainless steel and dissimilar welds.
  • Qualification blocks, and qualification of personnel.
  • Acceptance criteria. XI or III.
  • Automated vs. manual. Reproduction of data is an issue with the NRC.
  • Shop vs. field weld. If XI acceptance criteria are used, then limit the code case only to installation weld (field weld).

Draft code case will be brought forward at the next meeting.

2. Risk-Informed Containment Examination. The charter of this Task Group is to advance the use of risk-informed and performance-based methodologies to determine the appropriate examination requirements for containments.

3. Working Group on General Requirements (WGGR).

  • Proposed revision to Code Case N-532 was presented. The proposed revision eliminates the identification and reporting of corrective measures and the completion of the Owner’s Activity Report (OAR-1) each refueling outage. The proposed revision will require the preparation and approval of the OAR-1 upon completion of each Inspection Period. The proposed revision will also require the OAR-1 to be submitted to enforcement and regulatory authorities within 90 days following the end of the inspection period. To allow more time for the members to review the proposed changes, no vote was taken. A vote on the propose change is on the December agenda.
  • The NRC still has concerns with Code Case N-532. They want the OAR-1 submitted each refueling. Since they use this report as a tool to trend/track degradation, they would like it submitted each refueling outage. Currently, the requirement is to submit the OAR-1 at the end of the Inspection Period. Actions to resolve their concern are in progress.

4. Working Group on Implementation of Risk Based Examination (WG-RI).

  • NRC is to start auditing risk-informed ISI programs. The first NRC on-site audit is to be conducted at the Palisades plant (September 12-13, 2002).
  • NEI is responding to the NRC comments on Draft Revision C of NEI 00-04. NEI is to respond by the end of this year.
  • Big push by the NRC and NEI to address "active" functions. Currently, Code Case N-658 only addresses pressure boundary (passive).
  • Notice of Rulemaking for 10 CFR 50.69 should be published by the end of this year. Final rule should be published by mid-2003.
  • Work on the "Living" program document is still in progress. Plan to issue a draft by the end of this year.

Comments on the proposed non-mandatory Appendix "Risk-Informed Requirements for Piping" are still being addressed. The proposed Appendix will incorporate Code Cases N-560-2, N-577-1 and N-578-1 into Section XI. In addition, this Appendix will provide new guidance on the use of risk-informed methods in performing preservice inspections, pressure tests, and repair/replacement activities.

5. Task Group on Owners Reporting Requirements.

  • The proposed changes to Code Case N-532 were finalized and will be ready for a vote at the December meeting.
  • December's meeting will be the last for the Task Group. Remaining open actions will be transfer to the Working Group - General Requirements.

6. Task Group on Alloy 600/182/82 Issue.

  • A proposed Code change was presented and discussed. The proposed Code change will introduce a new visual examination method and Examination Category. The new visual examination method "VT-5" will be used to detect evidence of leakage from RPV head penetrations or vessel base material wastage associated with boric acid attack. The new Examination Category will be "B-E, Pressure Retaining Partial Penetration Welds in Vessels." The initial issuance of Category B-E will be limited to PWR RPV head and will require a VT-5 or Volumetric/Surface exam.
  • The proposed Code change was sent out to each member and visitor for comments. Comments are due back by Oct. 11. The plan is to address comments and present the proposed change for a vote at the next meeting (December).

7. Code revision - Thermal Fatigue Criteria for Examination of Class 1 Piping Welds. This change will require examination (UT) of HPSI welds that are between the pipe diameter of > 1 1/2" and <4". 10% sample will be required. Reaffirmed at both WGISC and SGWCS. Passed MC. Goes to BNCS.

8. Proposed code case (N-662), Alternate Requirements for Class 1 and 2 Surface Examinations. This code case limits the surface examination to welds that are susceptible to OD attack. This code case has been published.

9. Examination Requirements for Multiple Integral Welded Attachments on One Unique Vessel. This proposed code change and Code Case clarifies examination requirements for integral attachments to vessels. "For single vessels, only one welded attachment shall be selected for examination. The attachment selected for examination … shall be an attachment that serves as a support load path during normal system operation." Good Code Case. Passed WGISC. Discussed at SGWCS with no action taken. Action item will be rewarded and brought back.

10. A new item to clarify code requirement was brought forward. Note 2 in Examination Category B-G-2 list components subject to examination. Is steam generators part of note? The answer is NO. Still at WGISC.

11. Proposed code changes to IWL-2510(b) to provide requirements for additional surface examinations of tendon anchorage suspect areas. Passed MC. At BNCS.

12. This item incorporates Code Case N-602 into the code. This Code Case allows the procurement of Code material by Owners and Repair Organizations as long as they comply with IWA-1400(n) (i.e., App. B or NQA-1). This is beneficial to plants built to B31.1 and B31.7. Very good Code Case. Passed BNCS. However, the Code Committee is holding back from publishing this Code Case. This Code Case has drawn objections from manufactures ("N" stamp holders) and accreditation folks. They object to the Code Case for obvious reasons. Another set of presentations will be made this Friday to make their cases (ASME XI and "N" stamp holders).

13. The following Code Cases were acted through SGWCS:

Reaffirmed the following Code Cases;
N-577-1, N-578-1, N-560-2, N-460, N-491-2, N-575, N-593

Annulled the following Code Cases;
N-534, N-322, N-334, N-568, N-473-1 (IST), N-465-1 (IST)

14. Mr. Owen Hedden of Westinghouse is working on a Code Case to extend the 10-year interval RPV ISI exams by 10 or more years. This means performing the RPV exams once every 20 years. The weld category includes B-A, B-D, B-F, B-J, B-K, and B-N. White Paper is written. Pilot plants have been identified. The results of the pilot plant study will be submitted (as a relief request) to the NRC within one year. Draft Code Case is out for comments. It looks very promising.

15. Proposed code case and code revision to address inspection requirement for PWR CRD and ICI housing. This action will clarify inspection requirements for welds in ICI housing. At WGISC.

16. A utility has a Class 2 bolt that is greater than 2" on one end, and less than 2" on the other side. Both ends are threaded. Does this bolt require a volumetric exam? A Code Case will be developed to address this situation.

17. REPEAT. The NRC did not approve Code Case N-648, Alternative Requirements for Inner Radius Examinations of Class 1 Reactor Vessel Nozzles because the acceptance criteria referenced in the Code Case was wrong. Also, NRC is strongly urging utilities to use 1 mill wire for visual qualification. Code committee will revise the code case. Meanwhile utilities can submit relief with the correction/provision, and should have no problem getting approval to use the code case.

Inquiry Session

Note: To expedite the Code Inquiry process, all inquiries must be received by the ASME office (Oliver Martinez, Secretary) two weeks prior to the Code meeting.

The following Requirement Inquires was approved.

1. Question: Is it a requirement of examination category C-B that the acceptance standards of IWC-3511 be utilized for austenitic as well as ferritic steels?

Reply: IWC-3511 does not address automatic steel. However, rules were added in 2002 addenda to address austenitic steel.

2. Question: May sites with multiple plants, and a containment design that has no pre-stressing and unbonded post-tensioning systems, that are essentially identical in design and similarly exposed to or protected from the outside environment, use IWL-2421, and modify their examination requirements?

Reply: NO.

3. Question: Is Owner verification of item acceptability/suitability (IWA-7220) required for all replacement items being installed under replacement activities (i.e., not only for failed items)?

Reply: YES.

4. Question: Does IWA-7220 require that material identification and documentation be provided for replacement items in order for the Owner to perform a valid Acceptability/Suitability evaluation?

Reply: NO. IWA-7220 does not specify material identification and documentation requirements. However, IWA-7210 or the Owner’s QA program may require material identification and documentation to meet the Construction Code or design requirements.

5. Question: Is it a requirement of Appendix VIII, VIII-2100(d)(5) that the refracted sound beam angle(s) produced by compound angle search units be measured using a reference standard?

Reply: NO.

6. Question: Is it a requirement of Appendix VIII, VIII-2100(d)(5) that the refracted sound beam angle(s) produced by compound angle search units be verified initially and repeated from examination to examination?

Reply: YES.

The following Intent Inquiry was approved (by SC XI). (Note 1: Intent inquires require approval of SCXI members, and need accompanying code change. Note 2: Occasionally, Requirement Inquires go to SCXI because the inquiry did not get a unanimous vote at Inquiry Session.)

1. Question: Is it the intent of ASME Section XI, Appendix VIII that welds in austenitic piping containing structural weld inlay (Corrosion Resistant Clad) are to be examined in accordance with Appendix III until such time as performance demonstration requirements are specified?

Reply: YES.

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