Areva signs nuclear fuel cycle contracts

01 July 2016

Areva has announced a number of contracts in the nuclear fuel cycle. The contracts relate to used fuel management at a Belgian research reactor, a Romanian waste repository and the supply of used fuel storage canisters in the USA.

The Belgian Nuclear Research Centre (SCK-CEN) and Areva have agreed to extend their contract for the management of used fuel from the BR2 research reactor in Mol, Belgium.

The BR2 reactor is used for the production of medical radioisotopes and the testing of reactor materials and fuel. At peak times, the reactor is capable of supplying up to 65% of global weekly demand.

Areva has also signed a contract with the Romanian nuclear and radioactive waste agency ANDR to conduct a feasibility study for the construction of a fibre concrete container manufacturing facility at the Saligny site in Romania.

The containers will enable the safe conditioning of low- and intermediate-level waste at the repository under construction at the site, near the Cernavoda nuclear power plant. This will be a surface repository consisting of concrete cells, with containers containing cement-conditioned waste, covered by a concrete cap and finally by a multilayer impervious cover.

Areva also announced its logistics division, Areva TN, had signed a contract with Dominion Virginia Power of the USA to provide 75 NUHOMS EOS dry shielded used fuel storage canisters.

The canisters will be manufactured at Areva TN's facility in Greensboro, North Carolina, and delivered to two of Dominion Virginia Power's power plants between 2019 and 2038.

Meanwhile, Areva NP has completed the first use of an "innovative new maintenance technique". The company has used cavitation peening on the reactor vessel closure head of unit 2 of Exelon's Byron nuclear power plant in Illinois.

Cavitation peening involves the use of ultra-high-pressure water jets to compress the component's internal surface, preventing stress corrosion cracking. According to Areva, the technique is designed to extend the life of nuclear reactor primary circuit components for 20 years and can be used on all reactor designs.

Areva said it will also provide cavitation peening services at Byron unit 1 as well as units 1 and 2 of Exelon's Braidwood plant.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News