Preface

Nuclear power technology has reached the stage where there are “accepted practices” m many aspects of reactor design and construction The systems of instrumentation used in reactors of a specific type have more common features than differences Changes are gradual and evolu­tionary What is accepted practice today will be recognized as good practice for some years to come This does not mean that there will be no major changes in nuclear power technology in the future, it simply means that the rate of change will not be so rapid that what is learned today will have to be forgotten tomorrow

The instrumentation systems of today’s power reac­tors—including those on the drawing boards—are de­scribed in this book The performance and characteristics of the major components of power-reactor instrumentation systems are presented but with a minimum discussion of component design For example, in the chapters concerned with nuclear radiation sensors, sensor construction and performance are described m detail, but the data required by one who wishes to design a nuclear radiation sensor are not given This is in keeping with the basic intent to emphasize the systems aspect of power-reactor instrumenta­tion

The book is intended for the designers and operators of power-reactor instrumentation systems, 1 e, those con­cerned with the applications, not with the invention, of devices All systems aspects are discussed, including the problems associated with integrating individual components into subsystems and systems, the so-called “interface” problems The requirements (or design bases) to be satisfied by each system and subsystem are given, and current practices are outlined and evaluated

As the title indicates, systems associated with the nuclear power reactor are considered Systems associated with the electric power generated and with generator operation are not discussed In a sense the book is concerned with steam generation by nuclear reactors, although the fact that a turbogenerator is being driven by the steam does become involved in some of the instrumen­tation systems discussed

The book is organized into 18 chapters, divided into two volumes After an introductory chapter that sum­marizes basic definitions, reactor kinetics, and reactor types, Volume 1 continues with three chapters concerned with sensors The next chapter is concerned with the important electronics associated with neutron sensors Systems for determining the dynamic properties of nuclear reactors are then described Because control-rod drives and control-rod-position indicators have such a unique relation to the operation of nuclear power reactors and are so closely coupled to the neutron and position sensors of protection systems, these are briefly described in a chapter

The next four chapters are concerned with topics that are relevant to all reactor systems The increasing use of computers in data handling and process control in power reactors is described Systems for monitoring nuclear radiations and radioactive materials in nuclear plants are discussed Since power supplies are essential to the opera­tion of instrumentation systems, a chapter on the subject is included Many problems are the result of improper installation of the components of instrumentation systems, a chapter is devoted to this topic In the same manner, a chapter on quality assurance and reliability provides basic information needed by all reactor-instrumentation-systems designers and users

Volume 2 takes up the application of the material developed in Volume 1

The importance of reactor protection systems is such that one chapter is devoted to outlining the bases for their design and to describing current designs And a chapter describing radiation monitoring is included

A chapter summarizing the status of standards and codes on nuclear reactor instrumentation systems is then followed by the “big four ” These final four chapters summarize the current state of the art in instrumentation systems for the four major reactor types pressurized-water reactors, boiling-water reactors, sodium-cooled reactors, and gas-cooled reactors

Volume 2 concludes with one appendix a summary of in-core sensors in present-day reactors.

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