Check Valve Slam Caused by Air Intrusion in Emergency Cooling Water System
NURETH-14 - 2011 September 25-30

Presented at:
2011 September 25-30
Toronto, Canada
Session Title:
B12-2 Minisymposium on Pressure Surges in Nuclear Power Plants

C Samuel Martin (Georgia Institute of Technology)


Waterhammer pressures were experienced during periodic starting of Residual Heat Removal (RHR) pumps at a nuclear plant. Prior to an analytical investigation careful analysis performed by plant engineers indicated that the spring effect of entrapped air in a heat exchanger resulted in water hammer due to check valve slam following flow reversal. In order to determine in more detail the values of pertinent parameters controlling this water hammer a hydraulic transient analysis was performed of the RHR piping system, including essential elements such as the pump, check valve, and heat exchanger. Using characteristic torque and pressure loss curves the motion of the check valve was determined. By comparing output of the water hammer analysis with site recordings of pump discharge pressure the computer model was calibrated, allowing for a realistic estimate of the quantity of entrapped air in the heat exchanger.

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