David Culp

Charlotte, NC, USA

Mr. Dave Culp is Director of Nuclear Fuel Cycle Consulting for NAC International (NAC), where he is responsible for leading NAC’s consulting efforts related to the nuclear fuel cycle.

Prior to joining NAC, Mr. Culp worked for 33 years at Duke Energy (Duke), most recently as the General Manager of Nuclear Fuels and Analysis, where he was responsible for all aspects of the nuclear fuel for the 11 nuclear units owned and operated by Duke. Within the fuels division, he worked in various leadership roles including fuel procurement, spent fuel management, core design/safety analysis/methods, material control & accountability, and probabilistic risk assessment (PRA). Key accomplishments included:

  • Developed, licensed, and maintained a complete suite of vendor-independent methods to enable self-performance of the core design and safety analyses for the Duke Energy fleet. This included development and licensing of methods for Harris Nuclear Plant following Duke merger with Progress Energy in 2012.
  • Managed and supported multiple fuel design transitions and lead test assembly programs
  • Managed plant modifications to adapt the McGuire and Catawba nuclear stations for use of MOX fuel.
  • Spent fuel storage expansion programs involving spent fuel pool reracks, construction of independent spent fuel storage installations, and dry storage procurement/loading campaigns.
  • Negotiated rights to transfer Westinghouse and Framatome fuel and plant design information/data to 3rd party fuel vendors to support transitions in the supply of fabricated fuel.

In 2003, Mr. Culp was named vice president of Claiborne Energy Services – Duke’s affiliate in the Louisiana Energy Services partnership to license, construct and operate a new uranium enrichment plant in the United States.

He served as acting Vice President of Nuclear Engineering at Duke for 18 months prior to its merger with Progress Energy in 2012. In this capacity, he had responsibility for fuel engineering and analysis, component engineering, programs engineering, engineering support, fleet electrical design, and procurement engineering for the Duke fleet.

Mr. Culp has served as chairman of the World Nuclear Fuel Market Board of Governors, chairman of the Ad Hoc Utilities Group (AHUG), and chairman of the Nuclear Energy Institute’s Utility Fuel Committee.

He earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and M.B.A. from the University of South Carolina. He is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of North Carolina.

Areas of Expertise

  • Compatibility and mixed core evaluations
  • Contract development
  • Contract portfolio analysis
  • Core components design, materials, and performance
  • Cycle economics and fuel costs
  • Fuel cycle design
  • Fuel department staffing and organization assessments
  • Fuel Design & Manufacture
  • Fuel design change reviews
  • Fuel fabrication procurement
  • Fuel handling, core loading, and operational support
  • Fuel Management
  • Fuel manufacturing technical oversight
  • Fuel materials and irradiation effects
  • Fuel performance and reliability
  • Fuel rod analyses
  • Government Policy evaluation and impacts
  • New fuel design reviews / LTA's / Accident Tolerant Fuel
  • Operation & Performance
  • Poolside inspections and failure cause determination
  • Purchasing/marketing strategies
  • RFP and bid evaluations
  • Security of supply studies
  • Spent fuel storage options and economics