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SCIENTIST USES ALGOR SOFTWARE TO HELP PREVENT FUTURE CHERNOBYLS

 PITTSBURGH, June 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Many nuclear power plants built just like Chernobyl are still in operation in the former Soviet Union. One experienced researcher in nuclear reactor safety will soon begin working to help make these plants safer.
 Dr. Algirdas Marchertas is starting with the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plants, two of the world's largest nuclear power plants, and structural clones of Chernobyl. And when he goes to work on the containment of Ignalina's twin reactors, his tool box will be a computer loaded with Algor engineering software, the company said today.
 "The team will find information using Algor's engineering analysis software that should apply to all Soviet RBMK-type reactors, like the one at Chernobyl. Our aim will be to strive for a better understanding of these reactors and how we can make them safer to help prevent future Chernobyls," said Marchertas, who spent nearly 30 years at the U.S. Argonne National Laboratory working on jobs related to nuclear reactor safety.
 Representatives of the Lithuanian government and the rector of Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas, Lithuania, asked Marchertas to take a sabbatical from Northern Illinois University to analyze the structures and systems that should confine radioactivity at Ignalina. The university research team working on the safety of the Ignalina nuclear power plant is now affiliated with the Lithuanian Energy Institute.
 Marchertas has decided to use Algor's family of engineering analysis software to help him analyze the containment structures at Ignalina, which are built from the same blueprint as Chernobyl, but on a larger scale.
 "We selected Algor's software for a number of reasons, not the least of which are its ease of use and substantiated results. Algor's software is compatible with European standards and the computers we will be using in Lithuania. In addition, Algor's software has already met the rigorous standards of the U.S. nuclear industry," said Marchertas.
 According the Marchertas, Algor will donate both software and support to his project. "Not only is Algor giving the team a complete line of engineering analysis software, it is also providing cost-free training in its use, and continued technical support through the entire program," said Marchertas.
 "We understand the importance to families all over the world of doing everything possible to make certain there is no repeat of Chernobyl," said Michael L. Bussler, the president and founder of Pittsburgh-based Algor, Inc., a maker of design optimization and engineering analysis software used by mechanical, structural, electrical, plant, chemical and civil engineers on DOS (personal computer) and UNIX workstations.
 Many Small Structures with Potential Leaks
 In the United States and Western Europe, the system of structures that prevent radioactive leaks is built around the entire facility. Some reactors built in the former Soviet Union have smaller containment structures erected around vulnerable locations, such as the piping system used to cool the reactor core.
 Under Soviet rule, Ignalina was operated by Russians only. The Russians are still there, but the new Lithuanian government would like to know more about the reactors and especially their safety. In the process, they want to raise the safety standards beyond the suspect level under Soviet rule.
 Marchertas will take a sabbatical from Northern Illinois University, where he teaches engineering, to assist the project team at the Lithuanian Energy Institute investigating the safety of structural containment.
 Marchertas will create models of these local containment structures on a computer, then will apply different types of loads to them. Given the composition of the structure and other input, Algor software will tell Marchertas how much pressure the containment structures will take, how long each can be expected to last and where they might start to leak.
 "We will also be able to test potential improvements to the radioactive confinement systems of plants like Ignalina and Chernobyl," said Marchertas.
 "I will stay for at least one semester, about four months, which will certainly give us the opportunity to get the ball rolling. If I can find funding, however, I will stay for a full academic year and oversee the continuation of the project, and hopefully application of the results," said Marchertas.
 About Algor
 Algor software is used by engineers in more than 60 countries for computerized design optimization and model analysis. It is virtually impossible to spend a day without using a product Algor's software helped to design. Products as diverse as fast food restaurant furniture and food containers, Black and Decker's "Dustbuster," Nautilus exercise equipment and B.F. Goodrich tires were all designed with the help of Algor software.
 Algor software has been used to analyze a variety of containment vessels, piping systems and other structures that are used to contain radioactive and hazardous materials in numerous facilities throughout the world. According to Algor, 10 percent of its 9,000 customers use its software to design or test products, processes and facilities for safety and environmental reasons.
 -0- 6/24/93
 /CONTACT: Denise Belizar of Jampole Communications, 412-471-2463, for Algor/


CO: Algor, Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: CPR SU:

CD-KC -- PG008 -- 5326 06/24/93 12:46 EDT
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Date:Jun 24, 1993
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