Proceedings of the

The 33rd European Safety and Reliability Conference (ESREL 2023)
3 – 8 September 2023, Southampton, UK

A Fault Simulation and Monitoring Method of DCS in Nuclear Power Plant Based on Virtual Platform

Chao Guo1,a, Duo Li1,b, Ronghong Qu1,c, Fan Chen1,d, Yuan Chen2 and Xiaojin Huang1,e

1Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology of Tsinghua University, Collaborative Innovation Center of Advanced Nuclear Energy Technology, Key Laboratory of Advanced Reactor Engineering and Safety of Ministry of Education, Beijing, China.

2Huaneng Shandong Shidao Bay Nuclear Power Co., Ltd., Shandong, China.


Reliable operation of the distributed control system (DCS) is an important guarantee for the economy and safety of nuclear power plants (NPPs). Due to the complexity of functions and structures, the diversity of equipment and interfaces, there may be random faults or systematic faults in the DCS system that cannot be self-detected. It is an important topic to analyse and identify typical faults of DCS systems and equipment, and to establish the correlation between fault modes and fault phenomena. Based on commonly used FMEA method, this study collects typical system-level and component-level fault types of DCS systems and establishes a typical fault effect model in three dimensions (severity of fault consequences, probability of the environment excitation, and scope of the fault) to describe the fault impact. Fault simulation is an effective way for fault analysis. Based on two simulation software packages, a minimised DCS simulation system is built with the capability of fault simulation, comprising Level 0 process system, Level 1 control system, and Level 2 human-machine interface (HMI). The study further performs the implantation and monitoring of several typical DCS faults based on this virtual platform, which helps to validate the fault effects and improve the fault monitoring methods.

Keywords: Fault simulation, Fault monitoring, Distributed control system, Nuclear power plant, Virtual platform.

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