TVEL delivers new equipment for Chinese VVER-1000 fuel production

17 May 2023

The modernised ultrasonic unit supplied by TVEL is for fabrication at the Yibin plant, in China's Sichuan province, of Russian-designed TVS-2M nuclear fuel for VVER-1000 reactors.

It is described as a significant strategic project (Image: TVEL)

China has four VVER-1000 power units at the Tianwan nuclear power plant, with fuel being produced under licence from TVEL at Yibin since 2009, including fabrication of TVS-2M fuel assemblies since 2014.

Oleg Grigoriev, TVEL senior vice president for commerce and international business, said: "TVEL Fuel Company is consistently working with Chinese partners on projects for the manufacture of nuclear fuel in the PRC (People's Republic of China) using Russian technologies. For the first time in our history, we have helped to create a production of Russian-designed nuclear fuel abroad and continue to support it technologically at the most modern level."

The equipment delivered to the plant, which is part of the fuel division of China National Nuclear Corporation, is a modernised ultrasonic unit with "improved characteristics" for quality control of fuel rod welds. TVEL said "it allows you to control the length of the weld on the fuel rod using a high-precision scanning unit, equipped with a modern linear drive and a flaw detectors ... the installation operates with an error in measuring the length of the weld up to 0.1mm and a capacity of up to 90 items per hour".

TVEL, Russian nuclear company Rosatom's fuel division, describes the production of Russian-designed nuclear fuel as "one of the most significant technological projects in the development of strategic trade and economic relations between Russia and China".

Researched and written by World Nuclear News