A study on regulation standard for SMRs
Kang, Tae Seok
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The current thinking in the nuclear energy industry is favoring by small-scale Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) with improved safety and multiple applications compared to conventional large-size nuclear power plants. The demand for SMR is increasing in places where existing large-scale nuclear power plants are not applicable, such as developing countries with distributed power generation areas, small power grid capacity, heating demand in remote areas, and seawater desalination. Currently, cooperative research between Generation IV Information Forum (GIF) member countries is actively underway. SMRs are being evaluated as a major development direction for the nuclear energy industry. However, SMRs reactor facilities have not yet been deployed in commercial operation, and research and development is ongoing. External leakage of radioactive material from accidents can pose a very serious risk to workers and the public. Therefore, nuclear facilities must meet the regulatory standards of the regulatory body, from construction to operation and accident management. However, it is inappropriate to consider the characteristics of SMRs and then apply the current regulatory standards to SMRs. In this report, a literature review method was used to characterize SMRs. The main technical standards were examined to determine which items were found to be inadequate for SMRs based on the characteristics of the SMRs. As a result, four characteristics were derived. Then, an alternative to the regulatory criteria for siting and operation was derived. Improvements in operations and siting related regulatory requirements are recommended.