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Clarification on Endorsement of Nuclear Energy Institute Guidance in Designing Digital Upgrades in Instrumentation and Control Systems

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Nuclear Regulatory Commission.


Draft regulatory issue summary; request for comment and public meeting.


The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is seeking public comment on a draft regulatory issue summary (RIS) to supplement the staff's endorsement of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI)/Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) Joint Task Force report entitled, “Guideline on Licensing Digital Upgrades: EPRI TR-102348, Revision 1, NEI 01-01: A Revision of EPRI TR-102348 To Reflect Changes to the 10 CFR 50.59 Rule,” (hereinafter referred to as NEI 01-01.) in RIS 2002-22.


Submit comments by August 2, 2017. Comments received after this date will be considered if it is practical to do so, but the Commission is able to ensure consideration only for comments received before this date.


You may submit comments by any of the following methods:

  • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to and search for Docket ID NRC-2017-0154. Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-415-3463; email: For technical questions, contact the individuals listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document.
  • Mail comments to: Cindy Bladey, Office of Administration, Mail Stop: TWFN-8 D 36M, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.

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

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Brian Harris, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation (NRR), telephone: 301-415-2277, email: or Jason Drake, NRR, telephone: 301-415-8378, email: Both are staff of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.

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I. Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments.

A. Obtaining Information

Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2017-0154 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information for this action. You may obtain publicly-available information related to this action by any of the following methods:

  • Federal rulemaking Web site: Go to and search for Docket ID NRC-2017-0154.
  • NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System Start Printed Page 30914(ADAMS): You may obtain publicly-available documents online in the ADAMS Public Documents collection at​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 The draft RIS, “NRC Draft Regulatory Issue Summary 2017-XX Supplement to RIS 2002-22,” is available in ADAMS under Accession No. ML17102B507.
  • 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-2017-0154 in your comment submission.

The NRC cautions you not to include identifying or contact information that you do not want to be publicly disclosed in your comment submission. The NRC will post all comment submissions at as well as enter the comment submissions into ADAMS. The NRC does not routinely 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 that they do not want to be publicly disclosed in their comment submission. Your request should state that the NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove such information before making the comment submissions available to the public or entering the comment into ADAMS.

II. Background

The RIS is intended for all holders of and applicants for power reactor operating licenses or construction permits under part 50 of title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR), “Domestic Licensing of Production and Utilization Facilities,” except those who have permanently ceased operations and have certified that fuel has been permanently removed from the reactor vessel and all holders of, and applicants for, a power reactor combined license, standard design approval, or manufacturing license, and all applicants for a standard design certification, under 10 CFR part 52, “Licenses, Certifications, and Approvals for Nuclear Power Plants.”

This RIS is intended to clarify the endorsed NEI 01-01 guidance regarding licensee upgrades to digital instrumentation and control systems. Specifically, this RIS clarifies the guidance in NEI 01-01 pertaining to the performance and documentation of adequate technical evaluations and adequately documented qualitative assessments to meet the requirements of 10 CFR 50.59 “Changes, tests and experiments.” The attachment to this RIS provides a framework for preparing and documenting qualitative assessments considered acceptable to serve as a technical basis supporting the responses to key 10 CFR 50.59(c)(2) evaluations.

The NRC issues RISs to communicate with stakeholders on a broad range of matters. This may include communicating and clarifying NRC technical or policy positions on regulatory matters that have not been communicated to or are not broadly understood by the nuclear industry.

Proposed Action

The NRC is requesting public comments on the draft RIS. The NRC plans to hold a public meeting to discuss this RIS and the issues associated with clarification of the applicability of the endorsed NEI 01-01 guidance. All comments that are to receive consideration in the final RIS must still be submitted electronically or in writing as indicated in the ADDRESSES section of this document. Additional details regarding the meeting will be posted at least 10 days prior to the public meeting on the NRC's Public Meeting Schedule Web site at​public-involve/​public-meetings/​index.cfm. The NRC staff will make a final determination regarding issuance of the RIS after it considers any public comments received in response to this request.

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Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 28th day of June 2017.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Alexander D. Garmoe,

Chief, Generic Communications Branch, Division of Policy and Rulemaking, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.

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[FR Doc. 2017-13918 Filed 6-30-17; 8:45 am]