30 April 1998

Britain’s Gravatom Engineering Systems Ltd (GESL), has received its first overseas order from Japan’s Sumitomo for decommissioning tools which have been designed and manufactured under licence by the firm in conjunction with BNFL.

GESL of Bishop’s Waltham has worked with BNFL over the past four years to develop the range of tooling for use in areas of low radiation and the parties recently agreed to market them to overseas operators of nuclear plant. The range of hand operated tools is designed to cut and crimp piping so that pieces of equipment can be safely and speedily detached from service connections before removal from contaminated zones.

GESL’s Steve Browning, said: “The objective was to seal the pipe off prior to cutting, with the whole operation being completed in 15 seconds. Size, weight and strength of the tools are of paramount importance which is why aluminium and titanium alloys are used extensively in their construction. The current range of tools is hand operated but we are also working on the design of tools which will be remotely controlled and used in highly contaminated areas.”

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