Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Vacancy for Band 3 - Nuclear Safety Inspector - Fault Studies

Location Bootle, Cheltenham & London
Salary £67,931- £80,787 (plus an additional £3,992 London Weighting Allowance if the successful individual is London based)
Close date 23 Nov 2018

Job description

The Nuclear Safety Inspector Role

Nuclear Inspectors are expected to be capable of undertaking a variety of roles:

  • Inspecting sites
  • Assessing technical safety cases
  • Enforcing the law and influencing improvement in safety cases
  • Investigating incidents;
  • Developing strategic approaches to secure high standards in the industry
  • Managing nuclear research contracts etc

The role of a Nuclear Inspector is varied and you are likely to undertake a range of duties during your career. Some Inspectors concentrate on undertaking planned and reactive inspections on site, while others will mainly assess safety submissions or manage discrete intervention projects.

However, the focus is on working as teams to ensure compliance, reassure the public and improve safety standards. When Inspectors find shortcomings in compliance they initially provide advice but may issue verbal and written warnings. The powers available to inspectors enable them to serve Enforcement Notices and ultimately initiate prosecutions. There is also a wide range of powers available under nuclear license conditions.

Fault Studies

What does fault studies mean in ONR?

Within the Office for Nuclear Regulation, Fault Studies is the application of design basis, probabilistic safety and severe accident analysis techniques to Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) and other nuclear facilities. In some cases inspectors may specialise in some of these types of analysis and/or focus on a particular type of nuclear facility; for instance some inspectors specialise in fault studies assessment of nuclear chemical plants.

A typical accident fault sequence analysed might be a loss of coolant accident on a Pressurised Water Reactor (PWR). To understand this accident requires good knowledge of reactor kinetics, heat transfer and fluid dynamics and how major system components behave and interact with one another under severe changes of pressure and temperature. The challenge here is to understand the behaviour of a plant under a wide range of fault conditions using deterministic safety analysis techniques, most of which require the application of complex computer codes. Therefore fault studies specialists need to have a very good understanding of the underlying science (in this case neutronics, fluid dynamics and heat transfer) and how the science is used through the application of computer codes to predict the plant's behaviour in extreme fault or accident conditions. For nuclear facilities other than NPP, experience in Chemical Process Engineering, preferably nuclear but  at least Tier 1 COMAH, would normally be a pre-requisite, with a considerable part of that experience having been applied to analysis of high hazard facilities under fault conditions.

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Updated 2014-12-15