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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2014, Article ID 458016, 13 pages
Research Article

Nuclear Power Plant Maintenance Optimization with Heuristic Algorithm

Reactor Engineering Division, Jožef Stefan Institute, Jamova 39, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia

Received 17 July 2013; Revised 6 December 2013; Accepted 9 December 2013; Published 9 February 2014

Academic Editor: Bing Li

Copyright © 2014 Andrija Volkanovski and Leon Cizelj. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The test and maintenance activities are conducted in the nuclear power plants in order to prevent or limit failures resulting from the ageing or deterioration. The components and systems are partially or fully unavailable during the maintenance activities. This is especially important for the safety systems and corresponding equipment because they are important contributors to the overall nuclear power plant safety. A novel method for optimization of the maintenance activities in the nuclear power plant considering the plant safety is developed and presented. The objective function of the optimization is the mean value of the selected risk measure. The risk measure is assessed from the minimal cut sets identified in the Probabilistic Safety Assessment. The optimal solution of the objective function is estimated with genetic algorithm. The proposed method is applied on probabilistic safety analysis model of the selected safety system of the reference nuclear power plant. Obtained results show that optimization of maintenance decreases the risk and thus improves the plant safety. The implications of the consideration of different constraints on the obtained results are investigated and presented. The future prospects for the optimization of the maintenance activities in the nuclear power plants with the presented method are discussed.