Inauguration ceremony at George Besse II

18 May 2009

Areva has celebrated the inauguration of the first part of its George Besse II uranium enrichment plant.


The company's CEO, Anne Lauvergeon, spoke with prime minister Francois Fillon during a ceremony at the Tricastin site today. GB-II will be the first centrifuge-base enrichment plant in France, replacing old energy-intense gaseous diffusion facilities. The centrifuges come from a joint venture with Urenco called the Enrichment Technology Company.


George Besse II is said to cost €3 billion. The two wings of the plant should reach total a capacity of up to 7.5 million separative work units per year in 2016, enriching uranium up to a maximum of 6%.


Investors in project company in Société d'Enrichissement du Tricatin (SET), the operator of the future plant, include GdF-Suez (5%), Kansai Electric Power Company (2.5%) and the Japanese trading company Sojitz (2.5%).


Areva plans a similar facility for Eagle Rock, a site near Idaho Falls, USA.