atw - International Journal for Nuclear Power | 04.2019


atw Vol. 64 (2019) | Issue 4 ı April



* The Loviisa nuclear

power plant consists

of two pressurized

water reactors with

an installed net

capacity of 507 megawatt

each. It is situated

on the south

coast of Finland.

Loviisa 1 started

commercial operation

in 1977, Loviisa 2

followed in 1980.

upgraded with the latest technology

and monitored for optimal


By the time a facility seeks to

extend its operating license with

the NRC beyond 40 years –

because of improvements to

turbines, pumps, instrumentation

and other components – the

plants are extensively updated.

Through equipment upgrades,

many plants have been

able to raise the amount of

power they produce. These

improvements, along with other efficiencies,

have helped plants spend

more time generating elec tricity. The

average capacity factor for all nuclear

plants in 2018 was 92.3 percent,

which means that the plants were

almost always up and making electricity.

In contrast, in the 1970s,

reactors on average operated less than

60 percent of the hours in a year.

The industry has not stopped

improving either, as it continues to

develop advanced technology like

accident-tolerant fuels, which could

further boost plant performance,

increase safety and reduce costs.

Nuclear plants are prepared for

the worst

The operators at every nuclear plant

prepare detailed plans with one goal

in mind: to protect their communities

and employees.

These plans meet requirements

set by the NRC and the Federal

Emergency Management Agency. Plant

workers conduct training and drills

every month, and every two years they

test their plans with state and local

government agencies and the NRC.

Emergency plans are also updated

based on emerging issues. After the

terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, the

industry re-evaluated its plans to cover

a broader array of unforeseen events.

Additionally, after the Fukushima accident

in 2011, the industry stationed

more backup safety equipment at

plants and regional depots. The FLEX

strategy made about 1,500 pieces of

additional equipment, from nozzles to

generators, available to every nuclear

plant in case of an emergency.

Nuclear plants don’t just provide

more than 55 percent of carbon-free

electricity in the United States. They

also are among the safest and most

secure industrial facilities in the

country. And 40 years after the

accident at Three Mile Island, nuclear

energy remains the safest and cleanest

form of baseload power generation.

| |

| | Framatome. Innovation: Robotics

Company News


Innovation: Robotics

(framatome) They go by names such as

Charli, Eloise, Pelican or Forerunner

and they’ve joined the ranks at

Framatome to lend their iron hands to

our teams and our customers’ teams.

These robotic collaborators significantly

improve safety in the field and

enhance the performance of operations.

They are the illustration of our

innovation approach, aiming to offer

safe and increasingly competitive

nuclear energy.

Driven by major technological

advances, these robots represent years

of productive, collective research and

development. Experience some of this

innovation in action: from the Saint-

Marcel plant, where operators use robotic

arms to facilitate strenuous work

and reduce occupational risk, through

to dismantling of the Superphénix reactor,

where the laser robot Eloise has

become quite simply… indispensable.

Available in a variety of models,

SUSI can examine most reactor coolant

system components as well as reactor

pressure vessel, reactor pressure vessel

head, pumps, pressurizers and piping

in nuclear power plants worldwide.

SUSI also performs visual ultrasonic

inspections of baffle bolts. Plus,

it can serve as a gripping device to

retrieve foreign objects. In addition,

the robot can be calibrated under water

at any time during the inspection.

A separate satellite camera system

can be deployed with SUSI or on its

own to further enhance inspection

results in hard-to-reach areas.

| |

Finland: Framatome successfully

completes modification

of Loviisa nuclear power

plant’s Control rod instrumentation

& control system

Framatome has successfully modified

the Preventive Protection System (PPS)

at the Loviisa* nuclear power plant,

operated by the Finnish utility Fortum.

The Preventive Protection System uses

control rods to monitor the reactor

power and contributes to the safe operation

of the plant. Implemen tation of

the PPS is part of the modernization of

the plant’s I&C system.

The project started in 2016 when

Fortum awarded Framatome the

contract for the PPS and included the

modification of the TELEPERM XS

technology, originally delivered by

Framatome in 2008 (Unit 1) and 2009

(Unit 2).

Framatome’s I&C teams prepared

the required documentation, designed

and engineered the system modification

and performed the final testing,

installation and commissioning on site

during the 2018 outage. These tasks

are essential for the functionality of

the entire system and are also mandatory

for obtaining the licensing by

the Finnish safety authority STUK.

A joint team approach and close

cooperation between Framatome and

Fortum at all stages of the project

were key to ensuring successful completion

on time and to budget.

“This successful modification

project proves Framatome’s ability to

provide I&C upgrades to different

reactor types worldwide. Our

TELEPERM XS I&C system is well

known to Finnish operators and the

authority STUK which is a perfect

basis for further projects”, said

Frédéric Lelièvre, Senior Executive

Vice President in charge of Sales,

Regional Platforms and the Instrumentation

and Control Business Unit

at Framatome.

| |

GNS: Package design approval


(gns) On 17 January 2019, the German

Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear

Waste Management (Bundesamt

für kerntechnische Entsorgungssicherheit/BfE)

issued the package design

approval certificate for the transport

and storage cask CASTOR® MTR3 as

type B(U)F packaging. The cask was

developed by GNS Gesellschaft für

Nuklear-Service mbH especially for

spent fuel elements from research

reactors. The approval complies with

the internationally valid regulations

of the International Atomic Energy

Agency (IAEA) for the safe transport

of radioactive materials.

The CASTOR® MTR3 will initially

be used for the transport and storage

of spent fuel elements of the research

reactor FRM II of the TU Munich. In

addition, the cask will be able to


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