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Nuclear technology, engineering and calculation

Philippsburg nuclear power plant – sealing plugs for the sealing of the calotte nozzle in the reactor pressure vessel

Kraftanlagen Heidelberg was tasked with the design and fabrication of a plug for sealing the control rod drive enclosure tubes in the base calotte of the reactor pressure vessel in the Philippsburg nuclear power plant. In addition to engineering and fabrication, we also provided the mathematical proof that guaranteed the function.

For this purpose, multiple calculation models were processed by using the method of finite elements including non-linear calculation boundary conditions.

In particular, they were:

  • Non-linear finite element calculation to determine the load of the housing and the guide tube (model 1)
  • Non-linear finite element calculation to check the stress of the locking mechanism (model 2)
  • Process design of the springs and determination of the maximum spring force when locking

The result of the calculations showed the functionality of the sealing plug as well as the locking and unlocking force during the handling process. Prior to its use, the plug also underwent a practical test on a mock-up test stand and the calculations were confirmed.

Fact sheet

Kernkraftwerk Philippsburg

Project details:

  • FEM analysis of the sealing plug under non-linear boundary conditions
  • Proof of integrity for the reactor pressure vessel
  • Coordination with the customer

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