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Staff Sends Recommendation Related to Power Reactor Subsequent License Renewal

The NRC Staff issued SECY-14-0016, (released January 31, 2014), “Ongoing Staff Activities to Assess Regulatory Considerations for Power Reactor Subsequent License Renewal,” which informs the NRC of ongoing staff activities to prepare for the anticipated receipt and review of subsequent license renewal applications that, if approved, could extend operation of power reactors beyond 60 years. The staff believes the license renewal process and regulations are sound and can support subsequent license renewal; however, the staff has identified several areas that should be modified in the existing rule to allow for a more predictable review process. The staff proposes four options. Option 1 proposes no changes to the existing regulations. Option 2 recommends minor editorial changes to 10 CFR Part 54 to add alternate fracture toughness requirements and clarify how existing recordkeeping requirements apply to newly identified systems, structures, and components. Option 3, which includes Option 2, recommends an expansion in scope of 10 CFR Part 54 to include equipment associated with 10 CFR 50.54(hh)(2) and adds a provision to address timely renewal so that a licensee must implement aging-management activities before the expiration of its current license. Option 4, which includes Options 2 and 3, recommends additional considerations to address lessons learned from the first license renewal reviews. Specifically, the fourth option involves the exploration of potential requirements to assess the timing of submittal of applications for subsequent license renewal and the effectiveness of aging-management activities and operating experience.  Option 4 also discusses how the assessment of issues related to the Japan Lessons-Learned Project Directorate will be coordinated with reviews of subsequent license renewal applications. The staff recommends Option 4 to enhance the agency’s readiness to conduct subsequent license renewal reviews effectively and efficiently.

For SECY-14-0016, click here