BREST reactor complex (Credit: Rosatom)Russia’s ZiO-Podolsk plant has signed an agreement with the TMK Group for the manufacture of pipes for the steam generator of the BREST-OD-300 reactor. ZiO-Podolsk is part of Atomenergomash, the engineering division of Rosatom.

The BREST-OD-300 is part of the Pilot Demonstration Energy Complex (ODEK), which is under construction at the Siberian Chemical Combine as part of the Proryv (Breakthrough) project aimed at demonstrating a nuclear closed fuel cycle. ODEK will include three linked facilities: a fuel fabrication/re-fabrication unit, the 300MW BREST reactor, and a unit for used fuel reprocessing.

The contract for more than RUB1 billion ($13m) provides for the supply of unique pipes for the lead-cooled fast neutron steam generator for the BREST-OD-300 experimental demonstration power unit. TMK Group expects to complete all work on the manufacture and delivery of pipes to ZiO-Podolsk in 2023. The products will be integrated into steam generators for the BREST-OD-300 power unit, for which ZiO-Podolsk manufacturing equipment. In total, the reactor unit will include eight steam generators each weighing 72 tons.

Along with the reactor, the steam generator is part of the key large-sized equipment of the primary circuit of the reactor plant. For the BREST-OD-300 steam generator, an extra-long heat exchange tube was specially developed from experimental low-carbon micro-alloyed steel 03X18N13S2AM2VFBR-Sh 32 metres long. Production of the tube mastered by TMK with the participation of the NN Dollezhal Research & Development Institute of Power Engineering (Nikiet), the IP Bardin Central Research Institute of Ferrous Metals (TsNIIChermet) and the Russian Scientific Research Institute of the Pipe and Tube Industry (RosNITI – part of TKM)

The manufacturing technology for such a pipe has no analogues anywhere in the world. In the process of developing a new material and working out the technology, the specialists were able to achieve equally stable chemical and physical-mechanical properties of the alloy along the entire length of the product. The innovative high-strength austenitic steel can be used both in steam-water environments and superheated steam as well as in liquid-metal lead coolant. The new material has unique characteristics of long-term strength and ductility.

It took more than two years to master its. In preparation, the TMK Group put into production and developed structures for the transportation and delivery of a pilot batch of pipes. As a result of the teamwork of specialists in science and metallurgical production, and through the modernisation of the existing equipment, it was possible to achieve productivity that will make it possible to manufacture the order of 209,000 metres of piping on time.

Photo: BREST reactor complex (Credit: Rosatom)