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Notice

Applications and Amendments to Facility Operating Licenses Involving Proposed No Significant Hazards Considerations and Containing Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION:

License amendment request; opportunity to comment and request a hearing, order.

DATES:

Comments must be filed by January 5, 2012. A request for a hearing must be filed by February 6, 2012. Any potential party as defined in Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) 2.4 who believes access to Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information (SUNSI) is necessary to respond to this notice must request document access by December 16, 2011.

ADDRESSES:

Please include Docket ID NRC-2011-0275 in the subject line of your comments. For additional instructions on submitting comments and instructions on accessing documents related to this action, see “Submitting Comments and Accessing Information” in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document. 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-2011-0275. Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher, telephone: (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.
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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Submitting Comments and Accessing Information

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 can access publicly available documents related to this document 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 available online 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 the 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-2011-0275.

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 staff) is publishing this 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 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 notice includes notices of amendments containing SUNSI.

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 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 Start Printed Page 76194considered 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 60-day 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 will publish in the Federal Register a notice of issuance. Should the Commission make a final No Significant Hazards Consideration Determination, any hearing will take place after issuance. The Commission expects that the need to take this action will occur very infrequently.

Within 60 days after the date of publication of this notice, any person(s) whose interest may be affected by this action may file a request for a hearing and a petition to intervene with respect to issuance of the amendment to the subject facility operating license. Requests for a hearing and a petition for leave to intervene shall be filed in accordance with the Commission's “Rules of Practice for Domestic Licensing Proceedings” in 10 CFR Part 2. Interested person(s) should consult a current copy of 10 CFR 2.309, which is available at the Commission's PDR, located at One White Flint North, Room O1-F21, 11555 Rockville Pike (first floor), Rockville, Maryland 20852. The NRC regulations are accessible electronically from the NRC Library on the NRC Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​reading-rm/​doc-collections/​cfr/​. If a request for a hearing or petition for leave to intervene is filed within 60 days, the Commission or a presiding officer designated by the Commission or by the Chief Administrative Judge of the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board Panel, will rule on the request and/or petition; and the Secretary or the Chief Administrative Judge of the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board will issue a notice of a hearing or an appropriate order.

As required by 10 CFR 2.309, a petition for leave to intervene shall set forth with particularity the interest of the petitioner in the proceeding, and how that interest may be affected by the results of the proceeding. The petition should specifically explain the reasons why intervention should be permitted with particular reference to the following general requirements: (1) The name, address, and telephone number of the requestor or petitioner; (2) the nature of the requestor's/petitioner's right under the Act to be made a party to the proceeding; (3) the nature and extent of the requestor's/petitioner's property, financial, or other interest in the proceeding; and (4) the possible effect of any decision or order which may be entered in the proceeding on the requestor's/petitioner's interest. The petition must also set forth the specific contentions which the requestor/petitioner seeks to have litigated at the proceeding.

Each contention must consist of a specific statement of the issue of law or fact to be raised or controverted. In addition, the requestor/petitioner shall provide a brief explanation of the bases for the contention and a concise statement of the alleged facts or expert opinion which support the contention and on which the requestor/petitioner intends to rely in proving the contention at the hearing. The requestor/petitioner must also provide references to those specific sources and documents of which the petitioner is aware and on which the requestor/petitioner intends to rely to establish those facts or expert opinion. The petition must include sufficient information to show that a genuine dispute exists with the applicant on a material issue of law or fact. Contentions shall be limited to matters within the scope of the amendment under consideration. The contention must be one which, if proven, would entitle the requestor/petitioner to relief. A requestor/petitioner who fails to satisfy these requirements with respect to at least one contention will not be permitted to participate as a party.

Those permitted to intervene become parties to the proceeding, subject to any limitations in the order granting leave to intervene, and have the opportunity to participate fully in the conduct of the hearing.

If a hearing is requested, and the Commission has not made a final determination on the issue of no significant hazards consideration, the Commission will make a final determination on the issue of no significant hazards consideration. The final determination will serve to decide when the hearing is held. If the final determination is that the amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration, the Commission may issue the amendment and make it immediately effective, notwithstanding the request for a hearing. Any hearing held would take place after issuance of the amendment. If the final determination is that the amendment request involves a significant hazards consideration, any hearing held would take place before the issuance of any amendment.

All documents filed in NRC adjudicatory proceedings, including a request for hearing, a petition for leave to intervene, any motion or other document filed in the proceeding prior to the submission of a request for hearing or petition to intervene, and documents filed by interested governmental entities participating under 10 CFR 2.315(c), must be filed in accordance with the NRC E-Filing rule (72 FR 49139, August 28, 2007). The E-Filing process requires participants to submit and serve all adjudicatory documents over the internet, or in some cases to mail copies on electronic storage media. Participants may not submit paper copies of their filings unless they seek an exemption in accordance with the procedures described below.

To comply with the procedural requirements of E-Filing, at least 10 days prior to the filing deadline, the participant should contact the Office of the Secretary by email at hearing.docket@nrc.gov, or by telephone at (301) 415-1677, to request (1) a digital identification (ID) certificate, which allows the participant (or its counsel or representative) to digitally sign documents and access the E-Submittal server for any proceeding in which it is participating; and (2) advise the Secretary that the participant will be submitting a request or petition for hearing (even in instances in which the participant, or its counsel or representative, already holds an NRC-issued digital ID certificate). Based upon this information, the Secretary will establish an electronic docket for the hearing in this proceeding if the Secretary has not already established an electronic docket.

Information about applying for a digital ID certificate is available on NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​site-help/​e-submittals/​apply-certificates.html. System requirements for accessing the E-Submittal server are detailed in NRC's “Guidance for Electronic Submission,” which is available on the agency's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​site-help/​e-submittals.html. Participants may attempt to use other software not listed on the Web site, but should note that the NRC's E-Filing system does not support unlisted software, and the NRC Start Printed Page 76195Meta System Help Desk will not be able to offer assistance in using unlisted software.

If a participant is electronically submitting a document to the NRC in accordance with the E-Filing rule, the participant must file the document using the NRC's online, Web-based submission form. In order to serve documents through the Electronic Information Exchange System, users will be required to install a Web browser plug-in from the NRC Web site. Further information on the Web-based submission form, including the installation of the Web browser plug-in, is available on the NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​site-help/​e-submittals.html.

Once a participant has obtained a digital ID certificate and a docket has been created, the participant can then submit a request for hearing or petition for leave to intervene. Submissions should be in Portable Document Format (PDF) in accordance with NRC guidance available on the NRC public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​site-help/​e-submittals.html. A filing is considered complete at the time the documents are submitted through the NRC's E-Filing system. To be timely, an electronic filing must be submitted to the E-Filing system no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the due date. Upon receipt of a transmission, the E-Filing system time-stamps the document and sends the submitter an email notice confirming receipt of the document. The E-Filing system also distributes an email notice that provides access to the document to the NRC Office of the General Counsel and any others who have advised the Office of the Secretary that they wish to participate in the proceeding, so that the filer need not serve the documents on those participants separately. Therefore, applicants and other participants (or their counsel or representative) must apply for and receive a digital ID certificate before a hearing request/petition to intervene is filed so that they can obtain access to the document via the E-Filing system.

A person filing electronically using the agency's adjudicatory E-Filing system may seek assistance by contacting the NRC Meta System Help Desk through the “Contact Us” link located on the NRC Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​site-help/​e-submittals.html, by email at MSHD.Resource@nrc.gov, or by a toll-free call at 1-(866) 672-7640. The NRC Meta System Help Desk is available between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, excluding government holidays.

Participants who believe that they have a good cause for not submitting documents electronically must file an exemption request, in accordance with 10 CFR 2.302(g), with their initial paper filing requesting authorization to continue to submit documents in paper format. Such filings must be submitted by: (1) First class mail addressed to the Office of the Secretary of the Commission, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, Attention: Rulemaking and Adjudications Staff; or (2) courier, express mail, or expedited delivery service to the Office of the Secretary, Sixteenth Floor, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland, 20852, Attention: Rulemaking and Adjudications Staff. Participants filing a document in this manner are responsible for serving the document on all other participants. Filing is considered complete by first-class mail as of the time of deposit in the mail, or by courier, express mail, or expedited delivery service upon depositing the document with the provider of the service. A presiding officer, having granted an exemption request from using E-Filing, may require a participant or party to use E-Filing if the presiding officer subsequently determines that the reason for granting the exemption from use of E-Filing no longer exists.

Documents submitted in adjudicatory proceedings will appear in NRC's electronic hearing docket which is available to the public at http://ehd1.nrc.gov/​EHD/​, unless excluded pursuant to an order of the Commission, or the presiding officer. Participants are requested not to include personal privacy information, such as social security numbers, home addresses, or home phone numbers in their filings, unless an NRC regulation or other law requires submission of such information. With respect to copyrighted works, except for limited excerpts that serve the purpose of the adjudicatory filings and would constitute a Fair Use application, participants are requested not to include copyrighted materials in their submission.

Petitions for leave to intervene must be filed no later than 60 days from the date of publication of this notice. Non-timely filings will not be entertained absent a determination by the presiding officer that the petition or request should be granted or the contentions should be admitted, based on a balancing of the factors specified in 10 CFR 2.309(c)(1)(i)-(viii).

For further details with respect to this amendment action, see the application for amendment which is available for public inspection at the NRC's PDR, located at One White Flint North, Room O1-F21, 11555 Rockville Pike (first floor), Rockville, Maryland 20852. Publicly available documents created or received at the NRC are accessible electronically through ADAMS in the NRC Library at http://www.nrc.gov/​reading-rm/​adams.html. If you do not have access to ADAMS or if there are problems in accessing the documents located in ADAMS, contact the PDR Reference staff at 1-(800) 397-4209, (301) 415-4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov.

Exelon Generation Company, LLC, Docket Nos. STN 50-456 and STN 50-457, Braidwood Station, Units 1 and 2, Will County, Illinois; Docket Nos. STN 50-454 and STN 50-455, Byron Station, Units 1 and 2, Ogle County, Illinois

Date of amendment request: June 23, 2011.

Description of amendment request: This amendment request contains sensitive unclassified non-safeguards information (SUNSI). The proposed amendment would revise the maximum power level specified in each unit's operating license and the Technical Specification (TS) definition of rated thermal power. The proposed amendment would revise TS Section 2.1.1 to modify the departure from nucleate boiling (DNB) ratio and use of DNB correlations. The proposed amendment would revise TS 3.4.1 to modify the reactor coolant system total flow rate for measurement uncertainty recapture uprated power conditions. The proposed amendment would revise TS 5.6.5 to add analytical methods used to determine the core operating limits. In addition, the amendment request includes a revised steam generator tube rupture and margin to overfill analysis.

Basis for proposed no significant hazards consideration determination: As required by 10 CFR 50.91(a), the licensee has provided its analysis of the issue of no significant hazards consideration, which is presented below:

1. Does the proposed change involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated?

Response: No.

The nuclear steam supply system and balance-of-plant systems, components and analyses that could be affected by the proposed change to the rated thermal power (RTP) level were evaluated using revised design parameters. The evaluations determined that these structures, systems and components are capable of performing their design function at the proposed uprated RTP of 3645 MWt. A portion of the current safety Start Printed Page 76196analyses remain bounding, as they were performed at 102% of the current power level which exceeds the requested MUR [measurement uncertainty recapture] power level. Other analyses were previously performed at the current RTP level and have either been evaluated as acceptable or re-performed at the increased power level. The results demonstrate that acceptance criteria of the applicable analyses continue to be met at the uprated power conditions. As such, all applicable accident analyses continue to comply with the relevant acceptance criteria. Power level is an input assumption to equipment design and accident analyses; however, it is not a transient or accident initiator, and therefore does not increase the probability of an accident. Plant safety barriers are not challenged by the proposed changes.

The source terms used to assess radiological consequences for each transient or accident have been reviewed. he radiological consequences are either bounded by the current analysis or have been evaluated to remain within regulatory limits at the uprated condition. Specifically, the SGTR [steam generator tube rupture] and MTO [margin to overfill] analysis has been revised with updated assumptions to gain additional margin to overfill during a SGTR event. Appropriate modifications will be added to the plant in support of the SGTR analysis single failure assumptions. Although the revised analysis results in more than a minimal increase in the accident dose, as defined in [Nuclear Energy Institute] NEI 96-01, “Guidelines for 10 CFR 50.59 Implementation,” Revision 1, dated November 2000, the dose results remain within the limits specified in the Standard Review Plan (SRP), Section 15.6.3, “Radiological Consequences of Steam Generator Tube Failure (PWR).”

The primary loop components (e.g., reactor vessel, reactor internals, control rod drive housings, piping and supports, and reactor coolant pumps) remain within their applicable structural limits and will continue to perform their intended design functions. Thus, there is no significant increase in the probability of a structural failure of these components.

In addition, the proposed use of the [Leading Edge Flow Meter] LEFM, the NRC-approved W-3 alternative correlations, (i.e., the ABB-NV and WLOP correlations) and the increase in required RCS [reactor coolant systems] flow, serve to facilitate operations at the uprated power level and have no impact on the probability or consequences of any accident previously evaluated.

Therefore, the proposed changes described above do not involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated.

2. Does the proposed change create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated?

Response: No.

No new accident scenarios, failure mechanisms, or limiting single failures are introduced as a result of any proposed changes. LEFM system failures will not adversely affect any safety-related system or any structures, systems or components required for transient mitigation. Structures, systems and components previously required for transient mitigation continue to be capable of fulfilling their intended design functions. The proposed changes have no significant adverse affect on any safety-related structure systems or components and do not significantly change the performance or integrity of any safety-related system.

The proposed changes do not adversely affect any current system interfaces or create any new interfaces that could result in an accident or malfunction of a different kind than previously evaluated. Operating at RTP of 3645 MWt does not create any new accident initiators or precursors. Credible malfunctions are bounded by the current accident analyses of record or recent evaluations demonstrating that applicable criteria are still met with the proposed changes.

The proposed changes to replace the W-3 [departure from nucleate boiling] DNB correlation with the NRC approved ABB-NV and WLOP correlations, the revision to the required RCS flow rate, and the assumptions used in the revised SGTR and MTO analysis would not prompt a new or different kind of accident.

Therefore, the proposed changes do not create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated.

3. Does the proposed change involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety?

Response: No.

Operation at the uprated power condition does not involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety. Analyses of the primary fission product barriers have concluded that relevant design criteria remain satisfied, both from the standpoint of the integrity of the primary fission product barrier, and from the standpoint of compliance with the required regulatory and analysis acceptance criteria. As appropriate, all evaluations have been performed using methods that have either been reviewed or approved by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, or that are in compliance with regulatory review guidance and standards.

The margins of safety associated with the power uprate are those pertaining to core thermal power. These include fuel cladding, reactor coolant system pressure boundary, and containment barriers. Core analyses demonstrate that operation at the proposed uprated power level will continue to meet the nuclear design basis acceptance criteria. Impacts to components associated with the reactor coolant system pressure boundary structural integrity, and factors such as pressure-temperature limits, vessel fluence, and pressurized thermal shock were found to be acceptable under MUR operating conditions. The proposed changes will have minimal effect on operating parameters and the noted components remain capable of performing their intended safety functions following implementation of the MUR power uprate.

The revised SGTR and MTO analysis show acceptable results. The resultant SGTR dose remains within the limits specified in the Standard Review Plan (SRP), Section 15.6.3, “Radiological Consequences of Steam Generator Tube Failure (PWR).” The analysis also shows an improvement (i.e., a larger margin) in the MTO results. The results of all other associated safety analyses remain acceptable.

The proposed changes to use the NRC-approved W-3 alternative correlations, (i.e., the ABB-NV and WLOP correlations) and the increase in the required minimum RCS flow value verify that appropriate nuclear and thermal hydraulic margins to safety are maintained.

Therefore, the proposed changes do not involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety.

The NRC staff has reviewed the licensee's analysis and, based on this review, it appears that the three standards of 10 CFR 50.92(c) are satisfied. Therefore, the NRC staff proposes to determine that the requested amendments involve no significant hazards consideration.

Attorney for licensee: Mr. Bradley J. Fewell, Associate General Counsel, Exelon Nuclear, 4300 Winfield Road, Warrenville, IL 60555.

NRC Branch Chief: Jacob I. Zimmerman.

Exelon Generation Company, LLC, Docket No. 50-352, Limerick Generating Station, Unit 1, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania

Date of amendment request: October 12, 2011.

Description of amendment request: This amendment request contains sensitive unclassified non-safeguards information (SUNSI). The proposed changes revise the Technical Specification (TS) relating to the Safety Limit Minimum Critical Power Ratios (SLMCPRs). The changes result from a cycle-specific analysis performed to support the operation of Limerick Generating Station, Unit 1, in the upcoming Cycle 15. Specifically, the proposed TS changes will revise the SLMCPRs contained in TS 2.1, “Safety Limits,” for two recirculation loop operation and single recirculation loop operation to reflect the changes in the cycle-specific analysis. The new SLMCPRs are calculated using the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)-approved methodology described in NEDE 24011-P-A, “General Electric Standard Application for Reactor Fuel,” Revision 18.

Basis for proposed no significant hazards consideration determination: As required by 10 CFR 50.91(a), the licensee has provided its analysis of the issue of no significant hazards consideration, which is presented below:

1. Does the proposed amendment involve a significant increase in the probability or Start Printed Page 76197consequences of an accident previously evaluated?

Response: No.

The derivation of the cycle specific Safety Limit Minimum Critical Power Ratios (SLMCPRs) for incorporation into the Technical Specifications (TS), and their use to determine cycle specific thermal limits, has been performed using the methodology discussed in NEDE-24011-P-A, “General Electric Standard Application for Reactor Fuel,” Revision 18.

The basis of the SLMCPR calculation is to ensure that during normal operation and during abnormal operational transients, at least 99.9% of all fuel rods in the core do not experience transition boiling if the limit is not violated. The new SLMCPRs preserve the existing margin to transition boiling.

The MCPR [minimum critical power ratio] safety limit is reevaluated for each reload using NRC-approved methodologies. The analyses for Limerick Generating Station (LGS), Unit 1, Cycle 15 have concluded that a two loop MCPR safety limit of ≥1.09, based on the application of Global Nuclear Fuel's NRC-approved MCPR safety limit methodology, will ensure that this acceptance criterion is met. For single-loop operation, a MCPR safety limit of ≥1.12 also ensures that this acceptance criterion is met. The MCPR operating limits are presented and controlled in accordance with the LGS, Unit 1 Core Operating Limits Report (COLR).

The requested TS changes do not involve any plant modifications or operational changes that could affect system reliability or performance or that could affect the probability of operator error. The requested changes do not affect any postulated accident precursors, do not affect any accident mitigating systems, and do not introduce any new accident initiation mechanisms. Therefore, the proposed TS changes do not involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated.

2. Does the proposed amendment create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated?

Response: No.

The SLMCPR is a TS numerical value, calculated to ensure that during normal operation and during abnormal operational transients, at least 99.9% of all fuel rods in the core do not experience transition boiling if the limit is not violated. The new SLMCPRs are calculated using NRC-approved methodology discussed in NEDE-24011-P-A, “General Electric Standard Application for Reactor Fuel,” Revision 18. The proposed changes do not involve any new modes of operation or any plant modifications. The proposed revised MCPR safety limits have been shown to be acceptable for Cycle 15 operation. The core operating limits will continue to be developed using NRC-approved methods. The proposed MCPR safety limits or methods for establishing the core operating limits do not result in the creation of any new precursors to an accident. Therefore, the proposed TS changes do not create the possibility of a new or different kind of accident from any previously evaluated.

3. Does the proposed amendment involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety?

Response: No.

There is no significant reduction in the margin of safety previously approved by the NRC as a result of the proposed change to the SLMCPRs. The new SLMCPRs are calculated using methodology discussed in NEDE-24011-P-A, “General Electric Standard Application for Reactor Fuel,” Revision 18. The SLMCPRs ensure that during normal operation and during abnormal operational transients, at least 99.9% of all fuel rods in the core do not experience transition boiling if the limit is not violated, thereby preserving the fuel cladding integrity. Therefore, the proposed TS changes do not involve a significant reduction in the margin of safety previously approved by the NRC.

The NRC staff has reviewed the licensee's analysis and, based on this review, it appears that the three standards of 10 CFR 50.92(c) are satisfied. Therefore, the NRC staff proposes to determine that the amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration.

Attorney for licensee: J. Bradley Fewell, Esquire, Associate General Counsel, Exelon Generation Company, LLC, 4300 Winfield Road, Warrenville, IL 60555.

NRC Branch Chief: Harold K. Chernoff.

Order Imposing Procedures for Access to Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information for Contention Preparation

Exelon Generation Company, LLC, Docket Nos. STN 50-456, STN 50-457, STN 50-454, and STN 50-455, Braidwood Station, Units 1 and 2, Will County, Illinois and Byron Station, Units 1 and 2, Ogle County, Illinois; Exelon Generation Company, LLC, Docket No. 50-352, Limerick Generating Station, Unit 1, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania

A. This Order contains instructions regarding how potential parties to this proceeding may request access to documents containing Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information (SUNSI).

B. Within 10 days after publication of this notice of hearing and opportunity to petition for leave to intervene, any potential party who believes access to SUNSI is necessary to respond to this notice may request such access. A “potential party” is any person who intends to participate as a party by demonstrating standing and filing an admissible contention under 10 CFR 2.309. Requests for access to SUNSI submitted later than 10 days after publication will not be considered absent a showing of good cause for the late filing, addressing why the request could not have been filed earlier.

C. The requestor shall submit a letter requesting permission to access SUNSI to the Office of the Secretary, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001, Attention: Rulemakings and Adjudications Staff, and provide a copy to the Associate General Counsel for Hearings, Enforcement and Administration, Office of the General Counsel, Washington, DC 20555-0001. The expedited delivery or courier mail address for both offices is: U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. The email address for the Office of the Secretary and the Office of the General Counsel are Hearing.Docket@nrc.gov and OGCmailcenter@nrc.gov, respectively.[1] The request must include the following information:

(1) A description of the licensing action with a citation to this Federal Register notice;

(2) The name and address of the potential party and a description of the potential party's particularized interest that could be harmed by the action identified in C.(1); and

(3) The identity of the individual or entity requesting access to SUNSI and the requestor's basis for the need for the information in order to meaningfully participate in this adjudicatory proceeding. In particular, the request must explain why publicly-available versions of the information requested would not be sufficient to provide the basis and specificity for a proffered contention.

D. Based on an evaluation of the information submitted under paragraph C.(3) the NRC staff will determine within 10 days of receipt of the request whether:

(1) There is a reasonable basis to believe the petitioner is likely to establish standing to participate in this NRC proceeding; and

(2) The requestor has established a legitimate need for access to SUNSI.

E. If the NRC staff determines that the requestor satisfies both D.(1) and D.(2) above, the NRC staff will notify the requestor in writing that access to SUNSI has been granted. The written notification will contain instructions on how the requestor may obtain copies of the requested documents, and any other conditions that may apply to access to those documents. These conditions may Start Printed Page 76198include, but are not limited to, the signing of a Non-Disclosure Agreement or Affidavit, or Protective Order [2] setting forth terms and conditions to prevent the unauthorized or inadvertent disclosure of SUNSI by each individual who will be granted access to SUNSI.

F. Filing of Contentions. Any contentions in these proceedings that are based upon the information received as a result of the request made for SUNSI must be filed by the requestor no later than 25 days after the requestor is granted access to that information. However, if more than 25 days remain between the date the petitioner is granted access to the information and the deadline for filing all other contentions (as established in the notice of hearing or opportunity for hearing), the petitioner may file its SUNSI contentions by that later deadline.

G. Review of Denials of Access.

(1) If the request for access to SUNSI is denied by the NRC staff either after a determination on standing and need for access, or after a determination on trustworthiness and reliability, the NRC staff shall immediately notify the requestor in writing, briefly stating the reason or reasons for the denial.

(2) The requestor may challenge the NRC staff's adverse determination by filing a challenge within 5 days of receipt of that determination with: (a) The presiding officer designated in this proceeding; (b) if no presiding officer has been appointed, the Chief Administrative Judge, or if he or she is unavailable, another administrative judge, or an administrative law judge with jurisdiction pursuant to 10 CFR 2.318(a); or (c) if another officer has been designated to rule on information access issues, with that officer.

H. Review of Grants of Access. A party other than the requestor may challenge an NRC staff determination granting access to SUNSI whose release would harm that party's interest independent of the proceeding. Such a challenge must be filed with the Chief Administrative Judge within 5 days of the notification by the NRC staff of its grant of access.

If challenges to the NRC staff determinations are filed, these procedures give way to the normal process for litigating disputes concerning access to information. The availability of interlocutory review by the Commission of orders ruling on such NRC staff determinations (whether granting or denying access) is governed by 10 CFR 2.311.[3]

I. The Commission expects that the NRC staff and presiding officers (and any other reviewing officers) will consider and resolve requests for access to SUNSI, and motions for protective orders, in a timely fashion in order to minimize any unnecessary delays in identifying those petitioners who have standing and who have propounded contentions meeting the specificity and basis requirements in 10 CFR Part 2. Attachment 1 to this Order summarizes the general target schedule for processing and resolving requests under these procedures.

It is so ordered.

Start Signature

Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 30th day of November 2011.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Annette L. Vietti-Cook,

Secretary of the Commission.

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Attachment 1—General Target Schedule for Processing and Resolving Requests for Access to Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information in This Proceeding

DayEvent/activity
0Publication of Federal Register notice of hearing and opportunity to petition for leave to intervene, including order with instructions for access requests.
10Deadline for submitting requests for access to Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information (SUNSI) with information: supporting the standing of a potential party identified by name and address; describing the need for the information in order for the potential party to participate meaningfully in an adjudicatory proceeding.
60Deadline for submitting petition for intervention containing: (i) Demonstration of standing; (ii) all contentions whose formulation does not require access to SUNSI (+25 Answers to petition for intervention; +7 requestor/petitioner reply).
20Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff informs the requestor of the staff's determination whether the request for access provides a reasonable basis to believe standing can be established and shows need for SUNSI. (NRC staff also informs any party to the proceeding whose interest independent of the proceeding would be harmed by the release of the information.) If NRC staff makes the finding of need for SUNSI and likelihood of standing, NRC staff begins document processing (preparation of redactions or review of redacted documents).
25If NRC staff finds no “need” or no likelihood of standing, the deadline for requestor/petitioner to file a motion seeking a ruling to reverse the NRC staff's denial of access; NRC staff files copy of access determination with the presiding officer (or Chief Administrative Judge or other designated officer, as appropriate). If NRC staff finds “need” for SUNSI, the deadline for any party to the proceeding whose interest independent of the proceeding would be harmed by the release of the information to file a motion seeking a ruling to reverse the NRC staff's grant of access.
30Deadline for NRC staff reply to motions to reverse NRC staff determination(s).
40(Receipt +30) If NRC staff finds standing and need for SUNSI, deadline for NRC staff to complete information processing and file motion for Protective Order and draft Non-Disclosure Affidavit. Deadline for applicant/licensee to file Non-Disclosure Agreement for SUNSI.
AIf access granted: Issuance of presiding officer or other designated officer decision on motion for protective order for access to sensitive information (including schedule for providing access and submission of contentions) or decision reversing a final adverse determination by the NRC staff.
A + 3Deadline for filing executed Non-Disclosure Affidavits. Access provided to SUNSI consistent with decision issuing the protective order.
A + 28Deadline for submission of contentions whose development depends upon access to SUNSI. However, if more than 25 days remain between the petitioner's receipt of (or access to) the information and the deadline for filing all other contentions (as established in the notice of hearing or opportunity for hearing), the petitioner may file its SUNSI contentions by that later deadline.
A + 53(Contention receipt +25) Answers to contentions whose development depends upon access to SUNSI.
A + 60(Answer receipt +7) Petitioner/Intervenor reply to answers.
>A + 60Decision on contention admission.
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Footnotes

1.  While a request for hearing or petition to intervene in this proceeding must comply with the filing requirements of the NRC's “E-Filing Rule,” the initial request to access SUNSI under these procedures should be submitted as described in this paragraph.

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2.  Any motion for Protective Order or draft Non-Disclosure Affidavit or Agreement for SUNSI must be filed with the presiding officer or the Chief Administrative Judge if the presiding officer has not yet been designated, within 30 days of the deadline for the receipt of the written access request.

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3.  Requestors should note that the filing requirements of the NRC's E-Filing Rule (72 FR 49139; August 28, 2007) apply to appeals of NRC staff determinations (because they must be served on a presiding officer or the Commission, as applicable), but not to the initial SUNSI request submitted to the NRC staff under these procedures.

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[FR Doc. 2011-31310 Filed 12-5-11; 8:45 am]

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