July 04, 2018

The modern movement: digital I&C

Today’s instrumentation and control technologies are key to efficient, reliable plant operations. Clayton Scott explains how the transition to digital is helping to support the current and future fleet.

Instrumentation and control (I&C) systems are the central nervous system that monitor and control nuclear reactor operation and balance of plant systems. Initially, plants were built with analogue technology, but like much of the technology in the world, these systems are moving increasingly to digital.

Nuclear utilities adhere to strict licensing requirements and regulation, and regulators have processes in place that facilitate the upgrade and modernisation of original plant equipment. While some utilities opt to maintain their original, licence-based I&C configurations, new digital systems can allow plants to improve productivity and efficiency, cut the number of unscheduled outages and reduce surveillance, with greater plant optimisation and increased performance.