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Notice

PPL Susquehanna, LLC; Application and Amendment to Facility Operating License Involving: Proposed No Significant Hazards Consideration Determination

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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ACTION:

License amendment request, opportunity to comment, request a hearing and petition for leave to intervene.

DATES:

Comments must be filed by April 16, 2012. A request for a hearing must be filed by May 15, 2012.

ADDRESSES:

You may access information and comment submissions related to this document by searching on http://www.regulations.gov under Docket ID NRC-2012-0063.

You may submit comments by the following methods:

  • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2012-0063. 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.

For additional direction on accessing information and submitting comments, see “Accessing Information and Submitting Comments” in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Bhalchandra K. Vaidya, Project Manager, Plant Licensing Branch I-1, Division of Operating Reactor Licensing, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555. Telephone: 301-415-3308; fax number: 301-415-2102; email: bhalchandra.vaidya@nrc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Accessing Information and Submitting Comments

A. Accessing Information

Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2012-0063 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You may access information related to this document by the following methods:

NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS): You may access publicly-available documents online in the NRC Library at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the search, select “ADAMS Public Documents” and then select “Begin Web-based ADAMS Search.” For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov. The application for amendment, dated March 8, 2012, is available electronically under ADAMS Accession No. ML12069A176.

  • NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

B. Submitting Comments

Please include Docket ID NRC-2012-0063 in the subject line of your comment submission, in order to ensure that the NRC is able to make your comment submission available to the public in this docket.

The NRC cautions you not to include identifying or contact information in comment submissions that you do not want to be publicly disclosed. The NRC posts all comment submissions at http://www.regulations.gov as well as entering the comment submissions into ADAMS, and the NRC does not edit comment submissions to remove identifying or contact information.

If you are requesting or aggregating comments from other persons for submission to the NRC, then you should inform those persons not to include identifying or contact information in their comment submissions that they do not want to be publicly disclosed. Your request should state that the NRC will not edit comment submissions to remove such information before making the comment submissions available to the public or entering the comment submissions into ADAMS.

II. Introduction

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC or the Commission) is considering issuance of an amendment to Facility Operating License No. NPF-22, issued to PPL Susquehanna, LLC (the licensee), for operation of the Susquehanna Steam Electric Station, Unit 2 located in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

The proposed amendment would allow a temporary extension of 24 hours to the Completion Time for Condition C in the Susquehanna Steam Electric Station (SSES) Unit 2 Technical Specification (TS) 3.8.7, “Distribution Systems—Operating,” to allow a Unit 1 4160 V subsystem to be de-energized and removed from service for 96 hours to perform modifications on the bus. It also proposes a temporary extension of 24 hours to the Completion Time for Condition A in SSES Unit 2 TS 3.7.1, “Plant Systems—RHRSW [residual heat removal service water system] and UHS [ultimate heat sink],” to allow the UHS spray array and spray array bypass valves associated with applicable division RHRSW, and in Condition B, the applicable division Unit 2 RHRSW subsystem, to be inoperable for 96 hours during the Unit 1 4160 V bus breaker control logic modifications.

Before issuance of the proposed license amendment, the Commission will have made findings required by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended (the Act), and the Commission's regulations.

The Commission has made a proposed determination that the amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration. Under the Commission's regulations in Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (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. 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:

This “No Significant Hazards Consideration” evaluates the following changes to the Technical Specifications:

a. The Unit 2 TS 3.8.7, Condition C, Completion Time is revised to extend the Completion Time from 72 hours to 96 hours for a Unit 1 4160 V subsystem that is de-energized and removed from service.

b. The Unit 2 TS 3.7.1, Condition A, Completion Time is revised to extend the Completion Time from 72 hours to 96 hours for a loop of UHS spray array and spray array bypass valves being inoperable due to the Unit 1 4160 V subsystem completion time being extended.

c. The Unit 2 TS 3.7.1, Condition B, Completion Time is revised to extend the Completion Time from 72 hours to 96 hours for one Unit 2 RHRSW subsystem being inoperable due to the Unit 1 4160 V subsystem completion time being extended.

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

Response: No.

The temporary changes to the completion times for TS 3.8.7, Condition C and TS 3.7.1, Conditions A and B are necessary to implement plant changes which modify the 4 kV Control Circuits on the 4.16 kV ESS [electronic switching system] Buses in order to mitigate the consequences of multiple fire-induced spurious operations. These modifications decrease the probability that a fire-induced hot short will cause equipment malfunctions. The current assumptions in the safety analysis regarding accident initiators and mitigation of accidents are unaffected by these changes. No SSC [structure, system, and component] failure modes or mechanisms are being introduced, and the likelihood of previously analyzed failures remains unchanged.

The Completion Time to restore the Unit 2 RHRSW subsystem has been extended to 96 hours in order to complete the modifications associated with the Multiple Fire-Induced Spurious Operations issue. This is a temporary extension of the Completion Time. The extended Completion Times for TS 3.7.1 Conditions A and B are only applicable when either the 1A 201 4.16 kV ESS Bus or the 1A 202 4.16 kV ESS Bus is out of service in order to implement modifications associated with the Multiple Fire-Induced Spurious Operations issue. The affected Unit 2 RHRSW subsystem remains functional, while the other subsystem of Unit 2 RHRSW will remain operable.

There are no changes to any accident initiators or to the mitigating capability of safety-related equipment supported by the Class 1E Electrical AC system. The protection provided by these safety-related systems will continue to be provided as assumed by the safety analysis.

Therefore, this proposed change does not involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated.

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

Response: No.

The proposed changes to Technical Specification 3.8.7 Condition C, and to Technical Specification 3.7.1 Condition A and Condition B involve the extension of completion time for a Unit 1 4.16 kV Bus to be out of service in order to modify the control circuits to mitigate the consequences of multiple fire-induced spurious operations, the completion time for the UHS spray array and spray array bypass valves to be inoperable and one Unit 2 RHRSW subsystem being inoperable. No new equipment is being introduced, and installed equipment is not being operated in a new or different manner. There are no setpoints, at which protective or mitigative actions are initiated, affected by this change. These changes do not alter the manner in which equipment operation is initiated, nor will the function demands on credited equipment be changed. No alterations in the procedures that ensure the plant remains within analyzed limits are being proposed, and no major changes are being made to the procedures relied upon to respond to an off-normal event as described in the FSAR [final safety analysis report]. As such, no new failure modes are being introduced. The proposed change does not alter assumptions made in the safety analysis and licensing basis.

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

3. Do the proposed changes involve a significant reduction in a margin of safety?

Response: No.

The margin of safety is established through equipment design, operating parameters, and the setpoints at which automatic actions are initiated. The proposed changes are acceptable because the completion time extensions allow modifications to the 4.16 kV control circuits to mitigate the consequences of a fire-induced short damaging equipment. Therefore, the plant response to analyzed events is affected by this modification in that the plant will better cope with the fire-induced shorts and will continue to provide the margin of safety assumed by the safety analysis.

With the RHRSW Spray Pond Return Bypass Valves on the out of service loop electrically de-powered in the open position, a return flow path will be established. Since the RHRSW Pumps on Unit 2 are not impacted by the Unit 1—4.16 kV ESS Bus outages, with this return flow path established, the affected RHRSW Loop on Unit 2 will be functional. Also in this configuration a fire-induced circuit failures will not be able to affect the position of the valves. This configuration will continue to provide the margin of safety assumed by the safety analysis.

Therefore, the proposed change does 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 amendment request involves no significant hazards consideration.

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 considered 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.

III. Opportunity To Request a Hearing; Petition for Leave To Intervene

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 NRC'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 by the above date, 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 identify 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 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 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 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, 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, then any hearing held would take place before the issuance of any amendment.

IV. Electronic Submissions (E-Filing)

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 the 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 the 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 Meta 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's 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 NRC'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's 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 license amendment application, see the application for amendment dated March 8, 2012, which is available for public inspection at the Commission's PDR, located at One White Flint North, File Public Area 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. Persons who do not have access to ADAMS or who encounter problems in accessing the documents located in ADAMS, should contact the NRC's PDR Reference staff by telephone at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov.

Attorney for licensee: Bryan A. Snapp, Esquire, Assoc. General Counsel, PPL Services Corporation, 2 North Ninth St., GENTW3, Allentown, PA 18101-1179.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 9th day of March 2012.

Bhalchandra Vaidya,

Project Manager, Plant Licensing Branch I-1, Division of Operating Reactor Licensing, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.

[FR Doc. 2012-6407 Filed 3-15-12; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7590-01-P