AREVA’s Innovative Solution Selected for Life Extension at U.S. Nuclear Power Plants

Press release

AREVA and Exelon have signed a contract to implement a new component asset management process to significantly extend the life of nuclear reactor components. This process, known as cavitation peening, will be performed for the first time in the world on the reactor vessel closure heads of Exelon’s Byron and Braidwood nuclear power plants, located in Illinois.

Cavitation peening uses ultra-high-pressure water jets to work the surface of components in order to improve material properties and to enhance resistance to corrosion. Used preventatively, this process removes many causes of aging. It can be applied to components of both boiling water and pressurized water reactors.

“Developed as part of AREVA’s Forward Alliance program, this technology offers utilities an economical and innovative solution to reinforce the safety of nuclear components and to extend the lifetime of their operations,” said Philippe Samama, executive vice-president of AREVA’s Reactors & Services Business Group.