the european stress test for nuclear power plants

Limits of the ENSREG - Specifications

The European Council has asked for a comprehensive risk assessment that would allow for a judgment about the safety status of the plants. The assessment of safety margins is something else. Safety margins describe those safety provisions, or better still “safety related attributes”, of the plant, that enable the operator to cool down the reactor and to prevent radioactive emissions, even when the existing safety systems have failed and the licensed boundary conditions of the plant are exceeded. The focus of the assessment is on accident management measures that are needed when an accident has happened. For example, if in an aeroplane the engine and electricity supply fails, it is the means to get out of the plane and to come safely to the ground when the engines have stopped working. To take another metaphor, it is whether a ship has a sufficient number of robust life-boats and vests, in case of sinking.