Flexible Fuel Cycle Solutions
AREVA offers a range of high-performance enriched natural uranium assemblies for all types of reactors: the guarantee of a secure turnkey supply. With solutions that provide a flexible fuel cycle, AREVA provides options for Boiling Water Reactors (BWR) and Pressurized Water reactors (PWR) as well as incore components and core monitoring.
The 11 x 11 fuel rod array directly leads to a significant reduction of the linear heat generation rate (LHGR) providing:
- Margins for extended power uprate
- Margins for increased fuel rod burnup
- Margins regarding reliability (e.g. PCI, Crud)
- Margins for incore fuel management
- Flexibility for load follow
In addition, a more balanced moderator-to-fuel distribution results in better fuel utilization.
AREVA’s next generation BWR product brings enhancements to the proven ATRIUM™ principle and combines these with the inherent advantages of an 11 x 11 array.
ATRIUM™ 11 is the most recent member of AREVA’s ATRIUM™ family. It is based on the ATRIUM™ principle of a quadratic water channel replacing 9 fuel rods that serves as the load bearing structure. The number of PLFRs is increased to 20 with two different lengths.
Particular attention has been paid to reliability and robustness by enhanced features like:
- 3rd Generation FUELGUARD™ filter for maximum debris resistance
- Nine Alloy 718 ULTRAFLOW™ spacers with integrated springs for robustness and reduced susceptibility to debris entrapment
- Fuel channel made of controlled beta-quenched Zry-BWR for better dimensional stability
Flawless operation. Higher capacity factors. Efficient fuel utilization. AREVA knows what BWR operators expect from their fuel and has invested the energy needed to provide customers with safe, reliable and dependable fuel. The ATRIUM™ 10XM advanced BWR fuel has been designed to improve both the fuel efficiency and operating flexibility required to meet power production needs.
The superior performance of the ATRIUM™ 10XM design has already been demonstrated by reliable operation of more than 2000 fuel assemblies in European reactors since 2002 and is based on the proven supply and operation of over 20,000 ATRIUM™ 10x10 fuel assemblies. AREVA's refined manufacturing processes, such as our Lean Rod-to-Bundle Flow and Rigorous Foreign Material Exclusion Program, ensures that each ATRIUM™ 10XM fuel assembly meets specifications to the highest standards of control, accuracy and cleanliness. And due to its increased fuel mass and superior critical power performance, the ATRIUM™ 10XM design delivers significant fuel cycle cost savings in 18-month to 24-month cycles and uprate conditions while maintaining the proven reliability of the current ATRIUM™ 10 product line.
GAIA Fuel Assembly — Maximum Fuel Robustness, Performance And Reliability
To shoulder the demands of PWR utilities in fuel assembly performance while ensuring maximum robustness, AREVA has developed the GAIA PWR fuel assembly design. It is the result of a worldwide AREVA R&D project, which focused on reliability, robustness and thermal margin.
GAIA Structural Mixing Spacer Grid Combines Reliability and Robustness of HTP™ with Increased Thermal Performance
The GAIA structural mixing vane spacer grid ensures high fretting resistance, low pressure drop and high handling capability and provides excellent Critical Heat Flux (CHF) performance considering its superior mechanical performance.
- Fuel rod stability is provided by 8-line contact spring confi guration to ensure the GAIA design platform inherits the outstanding grid-to-rod fretting resistance of the proven HTP™ spacer grid design.
- Mixing vanes provide very efficient fluid mixing for demanding fuel management operating conditions and can support power up-rates.
- Outer strap design and the M5® material provide dimensional stability without risk of excessive fuel assembly interaction during core loading / unloading operations.
- Intrinsic design provides the GAIA spacer grid with high mechanical strength and a favorable deformation mode under accident-induced lateral loads.
Features and Benefits
Optimized for a balance in Neutronic, Mechanical and Thermal Performance, the GAIA offers:
- Maximum robustness against distortion and seismic issues with Q12™ material and MONOBLOC™ welded structure
- Increased thermal hydraulic performance with GAIA mixing grids and IGMs
- First-class fuel reliability with 8-line contact GAIA grid, HMP end grids to protect against fretting and the high fi ltering efficiency of GRIP™
- Superior performance under accident conditions with Alloy M5® and Cr-doped fuel
- High burnup capability based on an extensive global irradiation and testing database
AREVA’s fixed incore detector system provides operators with the ability to enhance reactor operation through continuous, real-time monitoring of actual core conditions in B&W, Westinghouse, and Combustion Engineering pressurized water reactors with a simple and reliable monitoring system. Through 24-hour monitoring, operators re provided an on-line assessment of actual core safety limits with a real-time display. This increases the overall guidance available to operators and improves the ability to navigate transient conditions and to detect and diagnose core anomalies.
Compared to movable incore detector systems, which acquire only periodic “snapshot” power distributions, fixed incore detector systems, with full-time monitoring, can expand the allowable operating window and improve reactor operating margin. The continuous monitoring feature of the AREVA fixed incore system allows utilities to safely operate closer to reactor limits, providing a 10- to 15-percent increase in operating margin in some plants.
AREVA Control Components Deliver Outstanding Performance
For more than 35 years, AREVA has been designing and fabricating control components for pressurized water reactors. Our long-life and wear-resistant designs are well-recognized for their outstanding operating performance in Babcock & Wilcox (B&W), Combustion Engineering (CE) and Westinghouse-type reactors. HARMONI™ replacement rod cluster control assemblies (RCCAs) are fully compatible with Westinghouse fuel and reactor mating components. In addition, AREVA engineering support can help meet utilities’ specific requirements.
Ion-Nitride Enhances Resistance to Wear
In the early stages of developing a wear-resistant RCCA, we performed sliding wear tests to determine the best wear treatment. These tests were conducted in the Frotteau Test Loop in France on Ion-Nitride tubes, Chrome Carbide-coated tubes, Armoloy-coated tubes (both 0.3 mils and 0.6 mils thickness) and uncoated stainless steel tubes. The tests confirmed that Ion-Nitride provided the best wear protection for both the RCCA and guide card, extending RCCA life
Unsurpassed and proven core monitoring flexibility.
Whether the plant is a BWR or PWR with fixed incore or moveable detectors, AREVA offers core monitoring solutions tailored to meet specific needs. AREVA's POWERPLEX-III system is available for demanding BWR core monitoring, including capabilities for on-line cladding stress monitoring. For PWRs, the POWERTRAXand the POWERTRAX system is available for both Westinghouse (W) and Combustion Engineering (CE) designed core monitoring, and the Fixed Incore Detector Monitoring System (FIDMS) is available for B&W core monitoring.
This has recently been upgraded with the option to monitor cladding stress with AREVA’s XEDOR methodology.