AREVA and CEA create joint vitrification research laboratory

Communiqué de presse

On November 8, Bernard Bigot, Secretary General of the French Commission for Atomic Energy and Alternative Energy Sources (CEA), and Anne Lauvergeon, AREVA CEO, signed an amendment for the creation of a joint CEA-AREVA vitrification laboratory.

This is the result of the long-standing collaboration between the CEA and AREVA teams, which prompted the idea of creating a joint vitrification laboratory destined to become the world leader, thanks to the scientific, technical and operating know-how acquired on both sides.

The signing of this agreement also heralds an important new stage after startup of the cold crucible at la Hague last April. With it, we confirm our determination to strengthen our innovation policy and maintain our technological lead.

Today, in France and the rest of the world, vitrification is the reference process for long-term packaging of high level waste. This proven solution is one of the aspects that make used fuel treatment technically and commercially robust. It benefits from more than 30 years of R&D carried out by the CEA and successfully implemented by AREVA.

More than 100 people are working in the laboratory to develop and consolidate the operational excellence associated with vitrification, and carry out the scientific and technological research needed to support it. Through the laboratory, AREVA will continue to be the world leader in vitrification technology, and the CEA the world’s leading researcher into the technologies to be used in the plants of the future, which will come into operation after 2030.

One of the key factors for the success of these new recycling plants will be the ability of intermediate and high level waste packaging technology to evolve.

The aim of the laboratory is to develop new types of glass and new containment matrices adapted to different kinds of waste, and to develop new, more efficient processes to optimize waste management.

It is equipped with all the R&D and testing tools and resources needed to create and characterize glass matrices, carry out long-term behavior studies, test experimental and industrial-scale processes.

The laboratory will have to meet three requirements: it will have to be able to anticipate, to capitalize on current knowledge and to shorten process development times.

This partnership between the CEA and AREVA has been created to provide today’s industrial customers with high-quality scientific, technical and operational support for their vitrification operations, and also to help AREVA to expand its industrial vitrification activities in the rest of the world.

Sur le procédé de vitrification
Sur le procédé de vitrification

La vitrification est l’aboutissement d’une longue collaboration entre le CEA et AREVA.
En 2010, rappelons-le, une nouvelle étape a été franchie dans le développement de cette technologie avec la mise en œuvre industrielle du Creuset-froid dans l’usine d’AREVA La Hague. La technologie du Creuset-Froid permet d’augmenter la capacité de production tout en améliorant la durée de vie des équipements…

Voir le dossier sur le Creuset Froid

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