A practical tool to assess leakage from divider plates in steam generators. Expert Solutions: Cross flow leakage through divider plates in the primary head of steam generators can be a contributor to Reactor Inlet header Temperature rise, which may have a negative effect on plant operations. A non-intrusive method to inspect divider plates for leakage can be useful in making timely and effective maintenance decisions. Kinectrics has developed and successfully demonstrated in field applications, a practical acoustic tool for performing inspections in drained steam generators during shutdowns. This advanced technique, known as ALIS (Acoustic Leak Inspection System), performs a scan of the divider plate face and presents a graphic image of the leak paths and, an estimate of the total leak area.
Proven technology / Unique Expertise
As the developer of ALIS, Kinectrics has in-depth knowledge of this technology and is the only company to deploy the tool in CANDU nuclear power plants. The Kinectrics IMS team has unique and significant field experience, including successful ALIS campaigns in the Pickering, Darlington, Bruce Power and New Brunswick Power Nuclear Generating stations since 1998.
Sound in an airborne medium has the capability to propagate through small apertures. Airborne sound with selected characteristics can therefore ‘leak’ through small cracks or travel in / follow a random shape and direction.
ALIS is comprised of a sound source, which is attached to a tube sheet on one primary side of the steam generator. The technology emits a series of controlled sound bursts, which are capable of propagating through air, but are stopped by all metal surfaces. The system’s acoustic sensor is a high-frequency microphone that scans over the divider plate. The acoustic signal received by the microphone is gated, to receive only the immediate sounds from plate leaks, while rejecting any delayed sounds passing through the tube bundle.
Cost-Effective Client Benefits
Kinectrics’ Acoustic Leak Inspection System provides clients with several important benefits, including:
- An effective non-intrusive method of detecting leaks in a divider plate
- The ability to monitor condition of a divider plate over outages
- A tool to support effective plant life management
- Enhanced capability to predict and estimate costs