[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 113 (Wednesday, June 12, 2013)]
[Page 35330]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-13951]

[[Page 35330]]




Initial Test Programs for Water-Cooled Nuclear Power Plants

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Regulatory guide; issuance.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a 
revision to Regulatory Guide (RG), 1.68, ``Initial Test Programs for 
Water-Cooled Nuclear Power Plants.'' This guide describes the general 
scope and depth that the staff of the NRC considers acceptable for 
Initial Test Programs (ITPs) for light water cooled nuclear power 

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2012-0293 about the 
availability of information regarding this document. You may access 
information related to this document, which the NRC possesses and are 
publically available, by using any of the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2012-0293. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-492-
3668; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact 
the individual(s) listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section 
of this document.
     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 ADAMS accession number 
for each document referenced in this notice is provided the first time 
that a document is referenced. Revision 4 of Regulatory Guide 1.68, is 
available in ADAMS under Accession No. ML13051A027. The regulatory 
analysis may be found in ADAMS under Accession No. ML13051A035.
     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.
    Regulatory guides are not copyrighted, and NRC approval is not 
required to reproduce them.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark Orr, Office of Nuclear Regulatory 
Research, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-
0001; telephone: 301-251-7495 or email: mark.orr@nrc.gov.


I. Introduction

    The NRC is issuing a revision to an existing guide in the NRC's 
``Regulatory Guide'' series. This series was developed to describe and 
make available to the public information such as methods that are 
acceptable to the NRC staff for implementing specific parts of the 
NRC's regulations, techniques that the staff uses in evaluating 
specific problems or postulated accidents, and data that the staff 
needs in its review of applications for permits and licenses. This 
regulatory guide is a rule as designated in the Congressional Review 
Act (5 U.S.C. 801-808). However, the Office of Management and Budget 
(OMB) has not found it to be a major rule as designated in the 
Congressional Review Act.

II. Further Information

    This guide describes the general scope and depth that the NRC staff 
considers acceptable for ITPs for light water cooled nuclear power 
plants. This RG is being revised to address design qualification tests 
for new design certifications (DCs) and combined licenses (COLs) using 
the requirements in part 52 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations (10 CFR), ``Licenses, Certifications, and Approvals for 
Nuclear Power Plants.'' This RG is also being revised to add some 
preoperational, low-power and power ascension tests for new light water 
reactors (LWRs) licensed under 10 CFR Part 52. In addition, this RG is 
being revised to add new and updated references.
    The RG has 3 appendices. Appendix A addresses the specific tests 
recommended or required for the ITPs. Appendix B provides information 
about ITP-related inspections that the NRC staff will perform, 
including the appropriate regional office staff. Finally, Appendix C 
contains guidance on the preparation and content of procedures for 
preoperational, fuel loading, initial criticality, low power, and power 
ascension tests.

III. Backfitting and Issue Finality

    Issuance of this final regulatory guide does not constitute 
backfitting as defined in 10 CFR 50.109 (the Backfit Rule) and is not 
otherwise inconsistent with the issue finality provisions in 10 CFR 
Part 52. As discussed in the ``Implementation'' section of this 
regulatory guide, the NRC has no current intention to impose this 
regulatory guide on holders of current operating licenses or combined 
    This regulatory guide may be applied to applications for operating 
licenses and combined licenses docketed by the NRC as of the date of 
issuance of the final regulatory guide, as well as future applications 
for operating licenses and combined licenses submitted after the 
issuance of the regulatory guide. Such action does not constitute 
backfitting as defined in 10 CRF 50.109(a)(1) or is otherwise 
inconsistent with the applicable issue finality provision in 10 CFR 
Part 52, inasmuch as such applicants or potential applicants are not 
within the scope of entities protected by the Backfit Rule or the 
relevant issue finality provisions in Part 52.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 31st day of May, 2013.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Thomas H. Boyce,
Chief, Regulatory Guide Development Branch, Division of Engineering, 
Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research.
[FR Doc. 2013-13951 Filed 6-11-13; 8:45 am]