"How SAFE are radioactive material transportation packages?"  

 
Computer analysis is an application of known engineering principles that take advantage of highpower computing capabilities in solving the response of computer models to various environments with complex mathematical calculations.
Computer analysis can be used for package certification by generating a computer model of a test object (package) and subjecting it to an accident environment to understand its response. A computer model must be constructed with the same weights, dimensions, hardnesses, specific heat, conduction, etc. as an actual package, then an analysis of an accident environment is calculated. The way that engineers ensure that the computer model of a specific package responds the same as a fullscale test in a specific accident is by benchmarking (verifing) the model with at least one fullscale test. This allows the engineer to conduct as many tests as required with the same package model.
Sandia National Laboratories' Transportation Programs has conducted physical fullscale and scalemodel tests for many types of packages and has used the results to benchmark the computer codes for structural and thermal analyses.
 
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