Florida Power & Light Company; St. Lucie Plant, Unit No. 1; Exemption, 77563-77565 [2011-31902]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 239 / Tuesday, December 13, 2011 / Notices For the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board. Alex S. Karlin, Chairman, Administrative Judge, Rockville, Maryland. [FR Doc. 2011–31903 Filed 12–12–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590–01–P NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION [Docket No. 50–335; NRC–2011–0194] Florida Power & Light Company; St. Lucie Plant, Unit No. 1; Exemption 1.0 Background The Florida Power & Light Company (FPL, the licensee) is the holder of Renewed Facility Operating License No. DPR–67, which authorizes operation of St. Lucie Plant, Unit No. 1 (St. Lucie, Unit 1). The license provides, among other things, that the facility is subject to all rules, regulations, and orders of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC, or the Commission) now or hereafter in effect. The facility consists of two pressurized-water reactors located in Jensen Beach, Florida. However, this exemption is applicable only to St. Lucie, Unit 1. By letter dated December 15, 2010, FPL submitted a License Amendment Request (LAR) to increase the licensed core power level for St. Lucie, Unit 1, from 2700 megawatts thermal (MWt) to 3020 MWt. As part of the LAR, the licensee also proposed a revision of the pressure-temperature (P–T) operating limits for St. Lucie, Unit 1. The above LAR referenced a topical report that stated that the proposed methodology for the P–T curves did not meet some of the requirements of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) part 50, Appendix G, thus requiring an exemption pursuant to 10 CFR 50.12. By letter dated March 3, 2011, the licensee responded to a request for additional information to the above LAR and also submitted a request for the subject exemption. srobinson on DSK4SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 2.0 Request/Action Part 50 of 10 CFR, Appendix G, ‘‘Fracture Toughness Requirements,’’ which is invoked by 10 CFR 50.60, requires that P–T limits be established for the reactor coolant pressure boundary during normal operating and hydrostatic or leak rate testing conditions. Specifically, 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, Section IV.A.2, states that ‘‘[t]he appropriate requirements on both the pressure-temperature limits and the minimum permissible temperature must be met for all conditions,’’ and ‘‘[t]he VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:25 Dec 12, 2011 Jkt 226001 pressure-temperature limits identified as ‘ASME [American Society for Mechanical Engineers] Appendix G limits’ in Table 3 require that the limits must be at least as conservative as limits obtained by following the methods of analysis and the margins of safety of Appendix G of Section XI of the ASME Code [Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code].’’ The regulations in 10 CFR part 50, Appendix G also specify the use of the applicable editions and addenda of the ASME Code, Section XI, which are incorporated by reference in 10 CFR 50.55a. In the 2009 Edition of 10 CFR, the 1977 Edition through the 2004 Edition of the ASME Code, Section XI are incorporated by reference in 10 CFR 50.55a. Finally, 10 CFR 50.60(b) states that, ‘‘[p]roposed alternatives to the described requirements in Append[ix] G of this part or portions thereof may be used when an exemption is granted by the Commission under [10 CFR] 50.12.’’ In conjunction with the LAR for an extended power uprate (EPU), the licensee proposed to revise the P–T limits but did not propose to relocate the P–T limits from the Technical Specifications to a PressureTemperature Limits Report (PTLR). However, in Section 2.1.2 of the Licensing Report for the St. Lucie, Unit 1, EPU (Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS) Accession No. ML103560429), the licensee referenced the basis document for the revised P–T limits. The basis document, included as Appendix G to the Licensing Report, is Westinghouse Commercial Atomic Power report WCAP–17197–NP Revision 0, ‘‘St. Lucie Unit 1 RCS [reactor coolant system] Pressure and Temperature Limits and Low-Temperature Overpressure Protection Report [LTOP] for 54 Effective Full-Power Years’’ (ADAMS Accession No. ML103560511), which references Combustion Engineering (CE) Owners Group Topical Report CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, ‘‘Development of a RCS Pressure and Temperature Limits Report for the Removal of P–T Limits and LTOP Requirements from the Technical Specifications’’ (ADAMS Accession No. ML011350387), as the methodology for determining the P–T limits. By letter dated March 3, 2011 (ADAMS Accession No. ML110660300), the licensee submitted a request for exemption from 10 CFR part 50, Appendix G, regarding the P–T limits calculation. The licensee requested an exemption from the requirements of 10 CFR 50, Appendix G, to use the methodology of CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6 as the basis for the developing the P–T limits. Specifically, PO 00000 Frm 00094 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 77563 the licensee requested an exemption from the requirements of 10 CFR 50, Appendix G, Section IV.A.2, because the P–T limits developed for St. Lucie, Unit 1, use a finite element method to determine the KIm factors. The NRC staff evaluated the specific PTLR methodology in CE NPSD–683, Revision 6. This evaluation was documented in the NRC safety evaluation (SE) of March 16, 2001 (ADAMS Accession No. ML010780017), which specified additional licensee actions that are necessary to support a licensee’s adoption of CE NPSD–683, Revision 6. The final approved version of this report was reissued as CE NPSD– 683–A, Revision 6, which included the NRC SE and the required additional action items as an attachment to the report. One of the additional specified actions (#21) stated, ‘‘(applicable only if the CE NSSS [nuclear steam supply system] methods for calculating KIm and KIt factors, as stated in Section 5.4 of CE NPSD–683, Revision 6, are being used as the basis for generating the P–T limits for their facilities) apply for an exemption against requirements of Section IV.A.2.of Appendix G to part 50 to apply the CE NSSS methods to their P–T curves.’’ The action item further stated that, ‘‘This is consistent with the ‘note’ on page 5–15 of CE NPSD–683, Revision 6. Exemption requests to apply the CE NSSS to the generation of P–T limit curves should be submitted pursuant to the provision of 10 CFR 50.60(b) and will be evaluated on a caseby-case basis against the exemption request acceptance criteria of 10 CFR 50.12.’’ An exemption to use the methodology of CE NPSD–683–A to calculate the KIt factors is no longer necessary because editions and addenda of the ASME Code, Section XI, that have been incorporated by reference into 10 CFR 50.55a subsequent to the issuance of the final SE of CE NPSD–683–A, allow methods for determining the KIt factors that are equivalent to the methods described in CE NPSD–683–A. If a licensee proposes to use the methodology in CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, for the calculation of KIm, an exemption is required, since the methodology for the calculation of KIm values in CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, cannot be shown to be equally or more conservative than the methodology for the determination of KIm provided in editions and addenda of the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, through the 2004 Edition. Therefore, the licensee submitted an exemption request, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 50.12 and 50.60, to apply the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD– E:\FR\FM\13DEN1.SGM 13DEN1 srobinson on DSK4SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 77564 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 239 / Tuesday, December 13, 2011 / Notices 683–A, Revision 6 in the development of the St. Lucie, Unit 1, P–T limits. During the NRC staff’s review of CE NPSD–683, Revision 6, the NRC staff evaluated the KIm calculational methodology of that report versus the methodologies for the calculation of KIm given in the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G. In the NRC’s March 16, 2001, SE the staff noted, ‘‘[t]he CE NSSS methodology does not invoke the methods in the 1995 edition of Appendix G to the Code for calculating KIm factors, and instead applies FEM [finite element modeling] methods for estimating the KIm factors for the RPV [reactor pressure vessel] shell * * * the staff has determined that the KIm calculation methods apply FEM modeling that is similar to that used for the determination of the KIt factors [as codified in the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G]. The staff has also determined that there is only a slight nonconservative difference between the P–T limits generated from the 1989 edition of the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, and those generated from CE NSSS methodology as documented in CE/ABB Evaluation 063–PENG–ER– 096, Revision 00, ‘Technical Methodology Paper Comparing ABB/CE PT Curve to ASME Section III, Appendix G,’ dated January 22, 1998 (ADAMS Accession No. ML100500514, nonproprietary version). The staff considers that this difference is reasonable and that it will be consistent with the expected improvements in P–T generation methods that have been incorporated into the 1995 edition of Appendix G to the Code.’’ This conclusion regarding the comparison between the CE NSSS methodology and the 1995 Edition of the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, methodology also applies to the 2004 Edition of the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, methodology because there were no significant changes in the method of calculating the KIm factors required by the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, between the 1995 edition (through 1996 addenda) and the 2004 editions of the ASME Code. In summary, the staff concluded in its March 16, 2001, SE that the calculation of KIm using the CE NPSD–683, Revision 6 methodology would lead to the development of P–T limit curves that may be slightly nonconservative with respect to those that would be calculated using the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, methods, and that such a difference was to be expected with the development of more refined calculational techniques. Furthermore, the staff concluded in its March 16, 2001, SE that P–T limit VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:25 Dec 12, 2011 Jkt 226001 curves that would be developed using the methodology of CE NPSD–683, Revision 6, would be adequate for protecting the RPV from brittle fracture under all normal operating and hydrostatic/leak test conditions. 3.0 Discussion Pursuant to 10 CFR 50.12, the Commission may, upon application by any interested person or upon its own initiative, grant exemptions from the requirements of 10 CFR part 50 when (1) the exemptions are authorized by law, will not present an undue risk to public health or safety, are consistent with the common defense and security; and (2) when special circumstances are present. Authorized by Law This exemption allows the use of an alternative methodology for calculating flaw stress intensity factors in the RPV due to membrane stress from pressure loadings in lieu of meeting the requirements in 10 CFR 50.60 and 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G. As stated above, 10 CFR 50.12 allows NRC to grant exemptions from the requirements of 10 CFR Part 50. In addition, the granting of the exemption will not result in violation of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, or the Commission’s regulations. Therefore, the exemption is authorized by law. No Undue Risk to Public Health and Safety The underlying purpose of 10 CFR 50.60 and 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, is to provide an acceptable margin of safety against brittle failure of the RCS during any condition of normal operation to which the pressure boundary may be subjected over its service lifetime. Appropriate P–T limits are necessary to achieve this underlying purpose. The licensee’s alternative methodology for establishing the P–T limits and the LTOP setpoints is described in CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, which has been approved by the NRC staff. Based on the above, no new accident precursors are created by using the alternative methodology. Thus, the probability of postulated accidents is not increased. Also, based on the above, the consequences of postulated accidents are not increased. In addition, the licensee used an NRC-approved methodology for establishing P–T limits and minimum permissible temperatures for the RPV. Therefore, there is no undue risk to the public health and safety. PO 00000 Frm 00095 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Consistent With Common Defense and Security The exemption results in changes to the plant by allowing an alternative methodology for calculating flaw stress intensity factors in the RPV. This change to the calculation of stress intensity factors in the RPV material has no negative implications for security issues. Therefore, the common defense and security is not impacted by this exemption. Special Circumstances Special circumstances, pursuant to 10 CFR 50.12(a)(2)(ii), are present in that continued operation of St. Lucie, Unit 1, with P–T limit curves developed in accordance with the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, is not necessary to achieve the underlying purpose of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G. Application of the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, in lieu of the calculational methodology specified in the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, provides an acceptable alternative evaluation procedure that will continue to meet the underlying purpose of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G. The underlying purpose of the regulations in 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, is to provide an acceptable margin of safety against brittle failure of the reactor coolant system during any condition of normal operation to which the pressure boundary may be subjected over its service lifetime. Based on the staff’s March 16, 2001, SE regarding CE NPSD–683, Revision 6, and the licensee’s rationale to support the exemption request, the staff determined that an exemption is required to approve the use of the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6. The staff concludes that the application of the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, for St. Lucie, Unit 1, provides sufficient margin in the development of RPV P–T limit curves such that the underlying purpose of the regulations (10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G) continues to be met. Therefore, the NRC staff concludes that the exemption requested by the licensee is justified based on the special circumstances of 10 CFR 50.12(a)(2)(ii), ‘‘[a]pplication of the regulation in the particular circumstances would not serve the underlying purpose of the rule or is not necessary to achieve the underlying purpose of the rule.’’ Based upon a consideration of the conservatism that is incorporated into the methodologies of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, and ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, the staff concludes that application of the KIm E:\FR\FM\13DEN1.SGM 13DEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 76, No. 239 / Tuesday, December 13, 2011 / Notices calculational methodology of CE NPSD– 683–A, Revision 6, as described, would provide an adequate margin of safety against brittle failure of the RPV. Therefore, the staff concludes that the exemption is appropriate under the special circumstances of 10 CFR 50.12(a)(2)(ii), and that the application of the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, is acceptable for use as the basis for generating the St. Lucie, Unit 1, P–T limits. 4.0 Conclusion Accordingly, the Commission has determined that, pursuant to 10 CFR 50.12(a), the exemption is authorized by law, will not present an undue risk to the public health and safety, and is consistent with the common defense and security. Also, special circumstances are present. Therefore, the Commission hereby grants FPL an exemption from the requirements of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, to allow application of the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD–683–A, Revision 6, as the basis for the St. Lucie, Unit 1, P–T limits. Pursuant to 10 CFR 51.32, the Commission has determined that the granting of this exemption will not have a significant effect on the quality of the human environment (76 FR 53497; dated August 26, 2011). This exemption is effective upon issuance. Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 5th day of December 2011. For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Michele G. Evans, Director, Division of Operating Reactor Licensing, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation. [FR Doc. 2011–31902 Filed 12–12–11; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590–01–P NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION [NRC–2011–0285] srobinson on DSK4SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Biweekly Notice; Applications and Amendments to Facility Operating Licenses Involving No Significant Hazards Considerations Background Pursuant to Section 189a. (2) of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended (the Act), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (the Commission or NRC) is publishing this regular biweekly notice. The Act requires the Commission publish notice of any amendments issued, or proposed to be issued and grants the Commission the authority to issue and make VerDate Mar<15>2010 16:25 Dec 12, 2011 Jkt 226001 immediately effective any amendment to an operating license upon a determination by the Commission that such amendment involves no significant hazards consideration, notwithstanding the pendency before the Commission of a request for a hearing from any person. This biweekly notice includes all notices of amendments issued, or proposed to be issued from November 17 to November 30, 2011. The last biweekly notice was published on November 29, 2011 (76 FR 73727). ADDRESSES: Please include Docket ID NRC–2011–0285 in the subject line of your comments. Comments submitted in writing or in electronic form will be posted on the NRC Web site and on the Federal rulemaking Web site http:// www.regulations.gov. Because your comments will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information, the NRC cautions you against including any information in your submission that you do not want to be publicly disclosed. The NRC requests that any party soliciting or aggregating comments received from other persons for submission to the NRC inform those persons that the NRC will not edit their comments to remove any identifying or contact information, and therefore, they should not include any information in their comments that they do not want publicly disclosed. You may submit comments by any one of the following methods. Federal Rulemaking Web Site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for documents filed under Docket ID NRC–2011–0285. Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher (301) 492–3668; email Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. Mail comments to: Cindy Bladey, Chief, Rules, Announcements, and Directives Branch (RADB), Office of Administration, Mail Stop: TWB–05– B01M, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555– 0001. Fax comments to: RADB at (301) 492– 3446. You can access publicly available documents related to this notice using the following methods: NRC’s Public Document Room (PDR): The public may examine and have copied for a fee publicly available documents at the NRC’s PDR, Room O1– F21, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. NRC’s Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS): Publicly available documents created or received at the NRC are accessible PO 00000 Frm 00096 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 77565 electronically through ADAMS in the NRC Library at http://www.nrc.gov/ reading-rm/adams.html. From this page, the public can gain entry into ADAMS, which provides text and image files of NRC’s public documents. If you do not have access to ADAMS or if there are problems in accessing the documents located in ADAMS, contact the NRC’s PDR reference staff at 1–(800) 397–4209, (301) 415–4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov. Federal Rulemaking Web Site: Public comments and supporting materials related to this notice can be found at http://www.regulations.gov by searching on Docket ID: NRC–2011–0285. Notice of Consideration of Issuance of Amendments to Facility Operating Licenses, Proposed No Significant Hazards Consideration Determination and Opportunity for a Hearing The Commission has made a proposed determination that the following amendment requests involve no significant hazards consideration. Under the Commission’s regulations in Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) 50.92, this means that operation of the facility in accordance with the proposed amendment would not (1) Involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated; (2) create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated; or (3) involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety. The basis for this proposed determination for each amendment request is shown below. The Commission is seeking public comments on this proposed determination. Any comments received within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice will be considered in making any final determination. Normally, the Commission will not issue the amendment until the expiration of 60 days after the date of publication of this notice. The Commission may issue the license amendment before expiration of the 60day period provided that its final determination is that the amendment involves no significant hazards consideration. In addition, the Commission may issue the amendment prior to the expiration of the 30-day comment period should circumstances change during the 30-day comment period such that failure to act in a timely way would result, for example in derating or shutdown of the facility. Should the Commission take action prior to the expiration of either the comment period or the notice period, it E:\FR\FM\13DEN1.SGM 13DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 239 (Tuesday, December 13, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 77563-77565]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-31902]


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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION

[Docket No. 50-335; NRC-2011-0194]


Florida Power & Light Company; St. Lucie Plant, Unit No. 1; 
Exemption

1.0 Background

    The Florida Power & Light Company (FPL, the licensee) is the holder 
of Renewed Facility Operating License No. DPR-67, which authorizes 
operation of St. Lucie Plant, Unit No. 1 (St. Lucie, Unit 1). The 
license provides, among other things, that the facility is subject to 
all rules, regulations, and orders of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission 
(NRC, or the Commission) now or hereafter in effect. The facility 
consists of two pressurized-water reactors located in Jensen Beach, 
Florida. However, this exemption is applicable only to St. Lucie, Unit 
1.
    By letter dated December 15, 2010, FPL submitted a License 
Amendment Request (LAR) to increase the licensed core power level for 
St. Lucie, Unit 1, from 2700 megawatts thermal (MWt) to 3020 MWt. As 
part of the LAR, the licensee also proposed a revision of the pressure-
temperature (P-T) operating limits for St. Lucie, Unit 1.
    The above LAR referenced a topical report that stated that the 
proposed methodology for the P-T curves did not meet some of the 
requirements of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) 
part 50, Appendix G, thus requiring an exemption pursuant to 10 CFR 
50.12. By letter dated March 3, 2011, the licensee responded to a 
request for additional information to the above LAR and also submitted 
a request for the subject exemption.

2.0 Request/Action

    Part 50 of 10 CFR, Appendix G, ``Fracture Toughness Requirements,'' 
which is invoked by 10 CFR 50.60, requires that P-T limits be 
established for the reactor coolant pressure boundary during normal 
operating and hydrostatic or leak rate testing conditions. 
Specifically, 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, Section IV.A.2, states that 
``[t]he appropriate requirements on both the pressure-temperature 
limits and the minimum permissible temperature must be met for all 
conditions,'' and ``[t]he pressure-temperature limits identified as 
`ASME [American Society for Mechanical Engineers] Appendix G limits' in 
Table 3 require that the limits must be at least as conservative as 
limits obtained by following the methods of analysis and the margins of 
safety of Appendix G of Section XI of the ASME Code [Boiler and 
Pressure Vessel Code].'' The regulations in 10 CFR part 50, Appendix G 
also specify the use of the applicable editions and addenda of the ASME 
Code, Section XI, which are incorporated by reference in 10 CFR 50.55a. 
In the 2009 Edition of 10 CFR, the 1977 Edition through the 2004 
Edition of the ASME Code, Section XI are incorporated by reference in 
10 CFR 50.55a. Finally, 10 CFR 50.60(b) states that, ``[p]roposed 
alternatives to the described requirements in Append[ix] G of this part 
or portions thereof may be used when an exemption is granted by the 
Commission under [10 CFR] 50.12.''
    In conjunction with the LAR for an extended power uprate (EPU), the 
licensee proposed to revise the P-T limits but did not propose to 
relocate the P-T limits from the Technical Specifications to a 
Pressure-Temperature Limits Report (PTLR). However, in Section 2.1.2 of 
the Licensing Report for the St. Lucie, Unit 1, EPU (Agencywide 
Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS) Accession No. 
ML103560429), the licensee referenced the basis document for the 
revised P-T limits. The basis document, included as Appendix G to the 
Licensing Report, is Westinghouse Commercial Atomic Power report WCAP-
17197-NP Revision 0, ``St. Lucie Unit 1 RCS [reactor coolant system] 
Pressure and Temperature Limits and Low-Temperature Overpressure 
Protection Report [LTOP] for 54 Effective Full-Power Years'' (ADAMS 
Accession No. ML103560511), which references Combustion Engineering 
(CE) Owners Group Topical Report CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6, 
``Development of a RCS Pressure and Temperature Limits Report for the 
Removal of P-T Limits and LTOP Requirements from the Technical 
Specifications'' (ADAMS Accession No. ML011350387), as the methodology 
for determining the P-T limits.
    By letter dated March 3, 2011 (ADAMS Accession No. ML110660300), 
the licensee submitted a request for exemption from 10 CFR part 50, 
Appendix G, regarding the P-T limits calculation. The licensee 
requested an exemption from the requirements of 10 CFR 50, Appendix G, 
to use the methodology of CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6 as the basis for 
the developing the P-T limits. Specifically, the licensee requested an 
exemption from the requirements of 10 CFR 50, Appendix G, Section 
IV.A.2, because the P-T limits developed for St. Lucie, Unit 1, use a 
finite element method to determine the KIm factors.
    The NRC staff evaluated the specific PTLR methodology in CE NPSD-
683, Revision 6. This evaluation was documented in the NRC safety 
evaluation (SE) of March 16, 2001 (ADAMS Accession No. ML010780017), 
which specified additional licensee actions that are necessary to 
support a licensee's adoption of CE NPSD-683, Revision 6. The final 
approved version of this report was reissued as CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 
6, which included the NRC SE and the required additional action items 
as an attachment to the report. One of the additional specified actions 
(21) stated, ``(applicable only if the CE NSSS [nuclear steam 
supply system] methods for calculating KIm and 
KIt factors, as stated in Section 5.4 of CE NPSD-683, 
Revision 6, are being used as the basis for generating the P-T limits 
for their facilities) apply for an exemption against requirements of 
Section IV.A.2.of Appendix G to part 50 to apply the CE NSSS methods to 
their P-T curves.'' The action item further stated that, ``This is 
consistent with the `note' on page 5-15 of CE NPSD-683, Revision 6. 
Exemption requests to apply the CE NSSS to the generation of P-T limit 
curves should be submitted pursuant to the provision of 10 CFR 50.60(b) 
and will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis against the exemption 
request acceptance criteria of 10 CFR 50.12.''
    An exemption to use the methodology of CE NPSD-683-A to calculate 
the KIt factors is no longer necessary because editions and 
addenda of the ASME Code, Section XI, that have been incorporated by 
reference into 10 CFR 50.55a subsequent to the issuance of the final SE 
of CE NPSD-683-A, allow methods for determining the KIt 
factors that are equivalent to the methods described in CE NPSD-683-A.
    If a licensee proposes to use the methodology in CE NPSD-683-A, 
Revision 6, for the calculation of KIm, an exemption is 
required, since the methodology for the calculation of KIm 
values in CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6, cannot be shown to be equally or 
more conservative than the methodology for the determination of 
KIm provided in editions and addenda of the ASME Code, 
Section XI, Appendix G, through the 2004 Edition. Therefore, the 
licensee submitted an exemption request, consistent with the 
requirements of 10 CFR 50.12 and 50.60, to apply the KIm 
calculational methodology of CE NPSD-

[[Page 77564]]

683-A, Revision 6 in the development of the St. Lucie, Unit 1, P-T 
limits. During the NRC staff's review of CE NPSD-683, Revision 6, the 
NRC staff evaluated the KIm calculational methodology of 
that report versus the methodologies for the calculation of 
KIm given in the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G. In the 
NRC's March 16, 2001, SE the staff noted, ``[t]he CE NSSS methodology 
does not invoke the methods in the 1995 edition of Appendix G to the 
Code for calculating KIm factors, and instead applies FEM 
[finite element modeling] methods for estimating the KIm 
factors for the RPV [reactor pressure vessel] shell * * * the staff has 
determined that the KIm calculation methods apply FEM 
modeling that is similar to that used for the determination of the 
KIt factors [as codified in the ASME Code, Section XI, 
Appendix G]. The staff has also determined that there is only a slight 
nonconservative difference between the P-T limits generated from the 
1989 edition of the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, and those 
generated from CE NSSS methodology as documented in CE/ABB Evaluation 
063-PENG-ER-096, Revision 00, `Technical Methodology Paper Comparing 
ABB/CE PT Curve to ASME Section III, Appendix G,' dated January 22, 
1998 (ADAMS Accession No. ML100500514, nonproprietary version). The 
staff considers that this difference is reasonable and that it will be 
consistent with the expected improvements in P-T generation methods 
that have been incorporated into the 1995 edition of Appendix G to the 
Code.'' This conclusion regarding the comparison between the CE NSSS 
methodology and the 1995 Edition of the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix 
G, methodology also applies to the 2004 Edition of the ASME Code, 
Section XI, Appendix G, methodology because there were no significant 
changes in the method of calculating the KIm factors 
required by the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, between the 1995 
edition (through 1996 addenda) and the 2004 editions of the ASME Code. 
In summary, the staff concluded in its March 16, 2001, SE that the 
calculation of KIm using the CE NPSD-683, Revision 6 
methodology would lead to the development of P-T limit curves that may 
be slightly nonconservative with respect to those that would be 
calculated using the ASME Code, Section XI, Appendix G, methods, and 
that such a difference was to be expected with the development of more 
refined calculational techniques. Furthermore, the staff concluded in 
its March 16, 2001, SE that P-T limit curves that would be developed 
using the methodology of CE NPSD-683, Revision 6, would be adequate for 
protecting the RPV from brittle fracture under all normal operating and 
hydrostatic/leak test conditions.

3.0 Discussion

    Pursuant to 10 CFR 50.12, the Commission may, upon application by 
any interested person or upon its own initiative, grant exemptions from 
the requirements of 10 CFR part 50 when (1) the exemptions are 
authorized by law, will not present an undue risk to public health or 
safety, are consistent with the common defense and security; and (2) 
when special circumstances are present.

Authorized by Law

    This exemption allows the use of an alternative methodology for 
calculating flaw stress intensity factors in the RPV due to membrane 
stress from pressure loadings in lieu of meeting the requirements in 10 
CFR 50.60 and 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G. As stated above, 10 CFR 50.12 
allows NRC to grant exemptions from the requirements of 10 CFR Part 50. 
In addition, the granting of the exemption will not result in violation 
of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, or the Commission's 
regulations. Therefore, the exemption is authorized by law.

No Undue Risk to Public Health and Safety

    The underlying purpose of 10 CFR 50.60 and 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix 
G, is to provide an acceptable margin of safety against brittle failure 
of the RCS during any condition of normal operation to which the 
pressure boundary may be subjected over its service lifetime. 
Appropriate P-T limits are necessary to achieve this underlying 
purpose. The licensee's alternative methodology for establishing the P-
T limits and the LTOP setpoints is described in CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 
6, which has been approved by the NRC staff. Based on the above, no new 
accident precursors are created by using the alternative methodology. 
Thus, the probability of postulated accidents is not increased. Also, 
based on the above, the consequences of postulated accidents are not 
increased. In addition, the licensee used an NRC-approved methodology 
for establishing P-T limits and minimum permissible temperatures for 
the RPV. Therefore, there is no undue risk to the public health and 
safety.

Consistent With Common Defense and Security

    The exemption results in changes to the plant by allowing an 
alternative methodology for calculating flaw stress intensity factors 
in the RPV. This change to the calculation of stress intensity factors 
in the RPV material has no negative implications for security issues. 
Therefore, the common defense and security is not impacted by this 
exemption.

Special Circumstances

    Special circumstances, pursuant to 10 CFR 50.12(a)(2)(ii), are 
present in that continued operation of St. Lucie, Unit 1, with P-T 
limit curves developed in accordance with the ASME Code, Section XI, 
Appendix G, is not necessary to achieve the underlying purpose of 10 
CFR Part 50, Appendix G. Application of the KIm 
calculational methodology of CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6, in lieu of the 
calculational methodology specified in the ASME Code, Section XI, 
Appendix G, provides an acceptable alternative evaluation procedure 
that will continue to meet the underlying purpose of 10 CFR Part 50, 
Appendix G. The underlying purpose of the regulations in 10 CFR Part 
50, Appendix G, is to provide an acceptable margin of safety against 
brittle failure of the reactor coolant system during any condition of 
normal operation to which the pressure boundary may be subjected over 
its service lifetime. Based on the staff's March 16, 2001, SE regarding 
CE NPSD-683, Revision 6, and the licensee's rationale to support the 
exemption request, the staff determined that an exemption is required 
to approve the use of the KIm calculational methodology of 
CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6. The staff concludes that the application of 
the KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 
6, for St. Lucie, Unit 1, provides sufficient margin in the development 
of RPV P-T limit curves such that the underlying purpose of the 
regulations (10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G) continues to be met. 
Therefore, the NRC staff concludes that the exemption requested by the 
licensee is justified based on the special circumstances of 10 CFR 
50.12(a)(2)(ii), ``[a]pplication of the regulation in the particular 
circumstances would not serve the underlying purpose of the rule or is 
not necessary to achieve the underlying purpose of the rule.'' Based 
upon a consideration of the conservatism that is incorporated into the 
methodologies of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, and ASME Code, Section XI, 
Appendix G, the staff concludes that application of the KIm

[[Page 77565]]

calculational methodology of CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6, as described, 
would provide an adequate margin of safety against brittle failure of 
the RPV. Therefore, the staff concludes that the exemption is 
appropriate under the special circumstances of 10 CFR 50.12(a)(2)(ii), 
and that the application of the KIm calculational 
methodology of CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6, is acceptable for use as the 
basis for generating the St. Lucie, Unit 1, P-T limits.

4.0 Conclusion

    Accordingly, the Commission has determined that, pursuant to 10 CFR 
50.12(a), the exemption is authorized by law, will not present an undue 
risk to the public health and safety, and is consistent with the common 
defense and security. Also, special circumstances are present. 
Therefore, the Commission hereby grants FPL an exemption from the 
requirements of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix G, to allow application of the 
KIm calculational methodology of CE NPSD-683-A, Revision 6, 
as the basis for the St. Lucie, Unit 1, P-T limits.
    Pursuant to 10 CFR 51.32, the Commission has determined that the 
granting of this exemption will not have a significant effect on the 
quality of the human environment (76 FR 53497; dated August 26, 2011). 
This exemption is effective upon issuance.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 5th day of December 2011.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Michele G. Evans,
Director, Division of Operating Reactor Licensing, Office of Nuclear 
Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 2011-31902 Filed 12-12-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 7590-01-P