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Offline brettj22

Certificates for License?
« on: Mar 29, 2015, 12:36 »
This is a relatively trivial question, but something no one at work seems to have an answer for...  A number of the ops instructors at work have certificates from the NRC for the license they had.  Did the NRC stop providing these when someone gets an RO/SRO license recently?

thenuttyneutron

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #1 on: Mar 29, 2015, 01:34 »
Certificates have nothing to do with the NRC.  The NRC gives out a license to those that go to license class and pass the NRC License Exam. 

The certificate is given out by the site for attending a license class. 

Offline Bleyse

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #2 on: Mar 30, 2015, 10:12 »
The actual 'license' from the NRC is a letter.  It is a standard form, you can find an example of what it looks like in NUREG-1021 Attachment 3 (which also includes a sample denial letter, for those that are interested).

At my license banquet, I was presented with a 'certification' document from the NRC, that was framed.  It was also signed by various NRC officers and as far as I know, they still present this to license holders.

In addition to this, many utilities authorize thier employees with a 'SRO certification' that is granted if this person passes a NRC audit exam.  The audit exam is not validated by the NRC, therefore it is a utility specific certification.  In some cases other utilities honor a certification obtained in this manner, but it does not carry the same weight as an actual license.

thenuttyneutron

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #3 on: Mar 30, 2015, 12:15 »
My license is mounted in a frame that is normally reserved for precious family photos.  It has been on the wall next to my bed for the last 5+ years to serve as a poignant reminder of both its blessing and curse each time I get out of bed.  After enduring 3 written biennial exams, my 6 year mark is fast approaching.  My license however will not be renewed.  I am proud of my license and the work I performed with it.  I am also relieved knowing that I will soon be able to relinquish it.

I have a great deal of respect for anyone that can earn a NRC license.  RO/SRO does not matter because they are both incredible accomplishments.  In my license class, I was responsible for the same knowledge that the SRO candidates were responsible for.  The only difference between RO and SRO was an additional qualification card, what positions you were in during the Simulator portion of the exam and, 25 questions at the end of the NRC exam.

Bleyse is correct that the Certification does not carry the same weight as a license.  I don't even think that all utilities require you to pass the Audit Exam for receiving one.  In my experience, the Certification was given to those who did not succeed in getting a license but at least made it to the Audit.

« Last Edit: Mar 30, 2015, 12:18 by Nutty Neutron »

Offline Bleyse

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #4 on: Mar 30, 2015, 03:21 »
I guess all I was trying to do was clarify the difference between a 'SRO cert' (which is granted by a utility, each one has their own standards) versus SRO/RO certification by the NRC, which is a completely different document than a license (which is a letter).  Many of the instructors at my plant have the SRO license certification, framed, in their cubicles.  They are NOT given out to a utility 'SRO cert'.  The certification that I am talking about (and I think the original poster was asking about) is awarded by the NRC.  It goes hand in hand with obtaining a license, at least in Region II.

thenuttyneutron

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #5 on: Mar 30, 2015, 03:37 »
I only have my license which I received in the mail from Region III and the meaningless framed item from INPO that was handed to me at my license dinner.  At my license dinner, the NRC only gave me a heartfelt speech about the great responsibility that the license bestowed upon me.

My NRC license will always be proudly displayed long after it is expired and no longer active.  Perhaps the NRC issues the certification when the license goes inactive.  If the NRC hands out a certification, I am not aware of it.  All of the students in my class went with the intent of earning a license. 






HeavyD

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #6 on: Mar 30, 2015, 04:12 »
10 CFR 55.1 states:

55.1 Purpose.

The regulations in this part:

(a) Establish procedures and criteria for the issuance of licenses to operators and senior operators of utilization facilities licensed under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, or Section 202 of the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974, as amended, and part 50, part 52, or part 54 of this chapter,

(b) Provide for the terms and conditions upon which the Commission will issue or modify these licenses, and

(c) Provide for the terms and conditions to maintain and renew these licenses.


The only area in 10 CFR 55 where “certification” is discussed is in 10 CFR 55.23, which deals with certification of medical fitness for license applicants.

SROC (Senior Reactor Operator Certificate/Certification) is a term used by utilities for a program that teaches individuals the same system and integrated plant operation level of knowledge that their licensed operators possess.  The main difference is the lack of a written examination and operating test, as is required by 10 CFR 55, Subpart E.

At our station, the operating unit requires at least a SROC for anyone to be a manager, with the exception of the business and finance manager.  The plan is for this requirement to carry over to the units under construction, once operational.  All of our instructors for the AP1000 have an SROC for the AP1000.  All job postings require either a SRO license or SROC at the current or a previous station.

And finally, ANSI 3.1-1993 defines the word "certification" and also makes mention of certification of knowledge equivalent to senior operator knowledge as part of the Special requirements for several manager positions. 

ANSI 3.1-1993, Section 2 - Definitions

certification - Documented confirmation of the successful completion of a qualification program.


ANSI 3.1 - 1993, Section 4 - Qualifications

4.2.1  Plant Manager

Special requirements:
(1)  Shall meet one of the following:
      (a)   Hold a Senior Operator's license, or
      (b)   Have held a Senior Operator's license, or
      (c)   Have been certified for equivalent senior operator knowledge, or
      (d)   Have plant operational knowledge consistent with the requirements of the Plant Manager's job.

Offline Bleyse

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #7 on: Mar 30, 2015, 07:57 »


The only major difference between mine and what an SRO would receive is that the letters at the top are red instead of blue.  Also, it obviously says "Senior" in there.  Not to mention that the license number is prefaced with SOP instead of OP.

This is not my license, it is a 'certification'.  My license came in the mail just like yours Neutron.  However, this document I have posted is not from my utility, it was presented at the license banquet by a NRC official.  Perhaps they don't do this in Region III.  I believe this is the document the original poster is asking about, and, to the best of my knowledge they still issue them in Region II.

thenuttyneutron

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #8 on: Mar 30, 2015, 08:10 »
I don't remember ever seeing anything like this from the NRC.

Offline Higgs

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #9 on: Mar 30, 2015, 10:17 »
Like mentioned, you get a letter that is the license. The framed certificate is something nice that they give. I'm not aware of "SRO certs" getting this.

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Offline MMM

Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #10 on: Mar 31, 2015, 04:54 »
As someone who is going through a cert class to be an instructor, the NRC has nothing to do with the cert. The cert is specific for the utility/site and allows shows that you have the requisite knowledge to teach RO/SRO license candidates. I believe there are some positions at a plant that the NRC allows a cert holder to fill as long as one of the positions has a license (e.g. at my site, one AOM must have a license the other two can have a license or cert).

From what I can tell, the cert class typically cuts out in plant time and a lot of sim time, so it only lasts 6 months as opposed to the 22-24 months for a license class. Nor does it require any of the requirements that are required for a license.

On a side note, the only difference I've seen between an RO and SRO license is that the SRO says they can direct or perform control room ops, whereas the RO says they can perform only. (Also one says Senior Reactor Operator/SRO, the other Reactor Operator/RO).

mjd

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #11 on: Apr 01, 2015, 08:00 »
(e.g. at my site, one AOM must have a license the other two can have a license or cert).
What is an "AOM" (functionally)?

On a side note, the only difference I've seen between an RO and SRO license is that the SRO says they can direct or perform control room ops, whereas the RO says they can perform only. (Also one says Senior Reactor Operator/SRO, the other Reactor Operator/RO).
This thread is mostly about a piece of paper and the training requirements, but as an old-timer I have a question about current NRC license exam practice. I got what was referred to as a "cold" SRO license exam; on a new construction plant. This was in 1977, pre-INPO and pre-Simulators. During my "plant walk through" part of the exam I was clearly being examined at both an RO level and an SRO level. The examiner set a "ground rule"; do it as you normally would do it, unless I tell you otherwise. What he meant was use the procedure, unless he said not to, because he had to examine my system/plant understanding. Out in the plant I was asked to do things that were normally EO functions; put the swing station battery charger in service, start the generator H2 seal oil system, etc. He wanted to see if I could find stuff and understood how it functionally operated.
Are SROs, especially (I)SROs still examined at this level of plant knowledge? I read a recent plant operator licensing NRC exam report indicating maybe not. Some NRC comments were some SRO candidates couldn't find stuff in the plant, if they did they didn't know what it did. Also a reluctance to use a procedure for manual operation of an AOV because the place had a 3K backlog of procedure rev requests. But they all passed. Is this typical?

Offline Bleyse

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #12 on: Apr 01, 2015, 05:28 »
I can not speak for the comments on someone's license exam, but I can confirm that SRO candidates are required to perform in plant JPMs as a part of the licensing process.  SRO(i) and RO candidates must take 15 JPMs (Upgrade SROs are only required to do 10).  For the ROs I know we had 4 Admin, 8 Simulator and 3 in plant.  I think for SRO(i) candidates the requirements are 5 Admin, 7 Simulator and 3 in plant, but I could be wrong.  The in plant tasks are typically NLO type activities.

There are a few in plant JPMs that may require a candidate to perform and immediate action from memory with no reference (open Rx Trip breakers, for example) but I can't think of any other cases where a procedure or reference would not be availble during a NRC exam. 

Offline MMM

Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #13 on: Apr 01, 2015, 07:00 »
The AOM is the Assistant Ops Manager. We have three (shift, training, and maintenance).

Offline matthew7899

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Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #14 on: Apr 01, 2015, 08:16 »
I think for SRO(i) candidates the requirements are 5 Admin, 7 Simulator and 3 in plant, but I could be wrong.

This is accurate.

Offline STGN

Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #15 on: Apr 04, 2015, 10:59 »
I also received a framed "Certification" certificate at my NRC banquet like those posted in the pictures above.  As others have stated, the license is just a single 8.5x11 sheet of paper that you get in the mail.  It was kinda anticlimactic when I got it....all that hard work for a piece of paper.

Are SROs, especially (I)SROs still examined at this level of plant knowledge? I read a recent plant operator licensing NRC exam report indicating maybe not. Some NRC comments were some SRO candidates couldn't find stuff in the plant, if they did they didn't know what it did. Also a reluctance to use a procedure for manual operation of an AOV because the place had a 3K backlog of procedure rev requests. But they all passed. Is this typical?

It does not surprise me that some SRO candidates may have had difficulty finding some equipment.  At the site I work at, we have engineers fresh out of college starting out as AO's (NLO's, NEO's, whatever) and sometimes they'll go through license class as instants and get a SRO license.  They will work in the plant as RO's for a while until "selected" to go back to license class at which time they'll be promoted to SRO.  They typically know the plant well since they've worked in it as a fully qualified AO for several years before going to license class.  However, some of the transfers from engineering that come over to get licensed may not be as familiar with all parts of the plant since they may not spend as much time working in it, however they are expected to get qualified to all AO tasks.  The same can be said for upgrades who have spent years as an RO in the control room but have not been in the plant in a while.  This is particularly true for them due to all of the modifications going on.  While they may have passed their NRC exam and earned a license, I'd speculate that they didn't pass the JPM's where they couldn't find the equipment.  
« Last Edit: Apr 04, 2015, 11:03 by STGN »

Offline Rennhack

Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #16 on: Apr 04, 2015, 11:23 »
It was kinda anticlimactic when I got it....all that hard work for a piece of paper.

It was kind of anticlimactic when I got it....all that hard work for a piece of paper, aka a pay check to help me care for my family.

Offline STGN

Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #17 on: Apr 04, 2015, 07:16 »
It was kind of anticlimactic when I got it....all that hard work for a piece of paper, aka a pay check to help me care for my family.

That's one way of looking at it.  For me, the work and study and then the stress of being in class and then taking the NRC exam, and the friendships developed in class, were much more memorable.  I also got the call from work saying they had a copy of my license before I got mine in the mail (maybe FedEx if I remember correctly), so I knew it was coming.  Inside the package was a single sheet of paper that says "LICENSE" on top.  It wasn't embossed in gold, no one carrying me on their shoulders, no kisses from a bunch of beautiful women, no parades with marching bands, etc.  

That said, I do have the original license I got in the mail framed and displayed along side my Certificate that started this whole thread.  Getting my SRO license is an accomplishment I'm proud of.    
« Last Edit: Apr 04, 2015, 07:18 by STGN »

Offline brettj22

Re: Certificates for License?
« Reply #18 on: Apr 05, 2015, 10:01 »
The pictures posted above were exactly what I was talking about.  It didn't seem like something the company gave out...  But then again my plant never had a completion dinner, especially considering our outage started the Sunday night after our exam...  I am definitely more proud of finishing the SRO program than any other degree or certification I had previously.

 


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