Because of health, safety, and quality concerns, all activities related to the design, procurement fabrication, welding, testing, and inspection of nuclear power plant components are performed in accordance with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers code (ASME CODE), and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) requirements, by following a written quality assurance program, which requires activity documentation and traceability of who did what, when, where, and how.
Nuclear power plant component welding, design, fabrication and quality questions and problems can come up when least expected. Therefore, having a welding engineer who has the right answers and solutions, a welding engineering degree, nuclear power plant welding and quality experience, are essential to avoid welding, design, fabrication and quality mistakes and their consequences.
Unfortunately, there is a lack of welding knowledge and a shortage of welding engineers in industry, including the nuclear industry, because the science, technology and application of welding are not generally taught at the four-year university or college level to engineering students except to those few students in a welding engineering degree program. And these few students are choosing other welding engineering career paths due to the uncertainty in building new nuclear power plants. Also adding to the welding engineering shortage are the retiring welding engineers who have nuclear power plant welding experience.
As a result, most potential supplier firms that design and fabricate weldments typically have no one on their staff who has a welding engineering degree. This limits their ability to interpret and apply the welding, quality and fabrication requirements in ASME Codes and NRC requirements, setup the required Quality Assurance Program, obtain the required Certificate of Authorization to use the ASME Code Symbol Stamp, and qualify as nuclear suppliers to design, procure, fabricate, weld, test and inspect nuclear power plant components.
Mr. McWane has worked for a major nuclear power plant reactor designer and fabricator for ten (10) years. Therefore, he has the experience and credentials in nuclear power plant component welding and quality engineering to help you establish and specify nuclear power plant component welding and quality requirements, answer technical welding and quality questions, and advise on matters of welding and quality for nuclear power plant components.