Chesapeake Section Members Visit Naval Academy —Paper On Floating Nuclear Power Plants Presented

The April meeting of the Chesapeake Section of The Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers included a tour of the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md., and a technical session at which the "External Effects Considerations in the Design of Floating Nuclear Power Plants" were presented by George G. Amir and James L. Simmons.

The tour of the Academy was organized by the faculty for Society members and their families, and included stimulating technical presentations as well as an entertaining seakeeping demonstration.

The highlight of the tour was an explanation of the automated features of the Academy's new towing tank which has been in operation less than one year.

The subsequent technical presentation covered design criteria development and implementation for floating nuclear power plants subjected to possibly damaging external effects. Capt. Robert K.

Reed served as moderator for the session. Captain Reed is presently director of Ship Programs in the Office of Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower, Reserve Affairs and Logistics). He formerly held the positions of Supervisor of Shipbuilding at Groton, Conn., Planning Officer at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, and Project Manager for the SSN 637-Class submarine. The authors of the technical paper are both members of Designers and Planners, Inc. in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Amir, general manager of the Washington office, was educated at the New York Institute of Technology, and Northeastern University. His varied career includes service as a merchant marine officer, design of power plant equipment for Ship Systems, where he was responsible for im- plementing shock design, analysis and test efforts to ensure that the DD-963-Class of destroyers and the LHA-l-Class of Amphibious Assault Ships meet the stringent U.S. Navy survivability requirements.

A former member of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Mr. Amir has worked toward improving the structural safety of land-based and floating nuclear power plants.

Mr. Simmons attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Columbia University prior to receiving his commission in the U.S. Navy and his designation as an Engineering Duty Officer in 1957. Following various engineering duty assignments, he was ordered to the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School from which he received an M.S. degree in 1966. Subsequently, he had duty tours at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, in the USS Cadmus at the Naval Ship Engineering Center, and at the Headquarters of the Military Sealift Command. He is currently director, naval architecture, for the Washington, D.C., office of Designers and Planners, Inc.

In their presentation, the authors discussed design criteria and their implementation in the floating nuclear power plant (FNPP) when subjected to external effects. The FNPP idea was proposed in the late 1960s because of site flexibility, immediate abundance of water, possible decoupling from seismic shock, and because the concept lends itself to a high level of standardization.

The current concept is in the final detailed design stages, and manufacturing facilities are nearly complete. The FNPP, when located offshore, must be protected by a breakwater to which it is permanently fastened by a mooring system. The major effects considered in the design of the FNPP are due to natural phenomena, accidents, and man-made adverse conditions. Tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunami waves and shipping accidents are considered for both safe operation and safe shutdown of the plant. Earthquakes, sub-marine slides, underwater currents and storms are considered for the breakwater design as well as for their effect on the FNPP through the mooring system. The above conditions are investigated by model test and analysis of the seabed-fluid-structure interaction. Accident conditions such as ship collisions with the breakwater, shipping accidents resulting in explosions (air blast), and aircraft crash may be examined by statistical and probability methods and by structural testing and analysis. The authors concluded that overall floating nuclear power plant safe design is only achieved by adhering to strict design c r i t e r i a and by verification of the design by analysis, scale model, and limited prototype testing.

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