Afrikantov OKBM Critical Test Facility Fails
On 23 September 2016, the core of the new critical assembly was under assembly in the critical experimental facility of Joint Stock Company Afrikantov Experimental Design Bureau for Mechanical Engineering (Afrikantov OKBM). As required by the process instructions, the grip of the draw gear with the working units of the core compensating group. At 10:44, alarm of the radiation monitoring system activated, and the process was stopped by putting the compensating group down to its initial position, which ensured the safe status of the critical assembly. Seven Afrikantov workers were involved in the process.
The occurrence in the operation of the critical experimental facility was tentatively classified by Afrikantov OKBM in accordance with the federal codes and regulations in the field of the use of atomic energy as exceeding the basic dose limits for personnel established by the radiation safety standards and assigned to INES Level 2.
As required by the federal codes and regulations in the field of the use of atomic energy, the occurrence is now investigated by specialists of the State Corporation Rosatom with the involvement of Rostechandzor and FMBA specialists.
The commission has established that the bridge crane lifted the draw gear with a jerk so that the permissible relocation of the compensating group was exceeded, which brought the critical assembly to a critical state and caused deterioration of the radiation environment in the critical assembly room.
The commission has revealed drawbacks in the organization of nuclear hazardous operations at Afrikantov OKBM and violations of the requirements of the federal codes and regulations in the field of the use of atomic energy.
Based on the findings of the analysis of the Afrikantov OKMB incident of 23.09.2016 Rostechnadzor monitors the state of nuclear and radiation safety of the research nuclear installations as part of permanent state supervision in order to rule out similar violations of the federal codes and regulations in the field of the use of atomic energy.