Nuclear ROV Performance Improvement

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Energy
Amount:
$99,958.00
Program:
SBIR
Contract:
DE-FG02-05ER84391
Solitcitation Year:
2005
Solicitation Number:
DE-FG01-04ER04-33
Branch:
N/A
Award Year:
2005
Phase:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
78585S05-I
Solicitation Topic Code:
25 a
Small Business Information
Utd, Inc.
8350 Alban Rd. Suite 700, Springfield, VA, 22150
Hubzone Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Duns:
N/A
Principal Investigator
 David Vickerman
 Mr.
 (703) 440-8834
 dvickerman@utdinc.com
Business Contact
 John Hill III
Title: Mr.
Phone: (703) 440-8834
Email: jhill@utdinc.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
78585S Some regions inside a nuclear reactor are not inspected because they are not accessible with current technology. Limited-access Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) such as "FireFly" have been successfully used in limited cases to inspect inaccessible areas of concern in the reactor. However, the reliable performance of these ROVs has been severely limited by their electric motors which have a very short mean time between failure due to flooding (i.e. 72 to 96 hrs.). This project will identify design modifications that allow electric motors to run flooded with reactor-quality water, thus enabling the motor to operate throughout an entire nuclear refueling outage without replacement. In addition, an adjustable orientation control will be incorporated in the new design, increasing accessibility to more areas of the reactor by allowing a vertically-oriented ROV to change to horizontal orientation. Phase I will consist of: (1) an engineering analysis of the ability of electric motor systems to run flooded, and a 100 hour test of a flooded electric motor to identify failure points; (2) a definition of FireFly ROV current orientation parameters, an adjustable orientation design, and a mock-up test of the adjustable orientation ROV concept; and (3) a conceptual design for a limited-access ROV with a new configuration that utilizes the flooded motor concept and adjustable orientation. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: The improved ROV should enhance inspections at nuclear facilities. Benefits should range from improved safety operation of nuclear plants to improved efficiency and shorter refueling/maintenance outage schedules.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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