Areva NP said on 26 June it had signed three fuel contracts totalling $560m to supply its Atrium 11 advanced boiling water reactor (BWR) fuel and GAIA and HTP pressurised water reactor (PWR) fuel designs to four nuclear energy facilities beginning in 2020.
Areva NP said its Atrium 11 most advanced BWR fuel, “provides cost benefits and greater operational flexibility through its enhanced uranium efficiency while meeting the demands of high energy fuel cycles”. The design features an 11x11 fuel rod array, which is particularly suitable for plants that have implemented power uprates or optimised capacity factor operating strategies. The fuel is already operating in five reactors worldwide. The GAIA PWR fuel “provides greater thermal performance and improved mechanical behaviour, and features the industry’s leading cladding material - M5”. It “is the result of a global research and development project to meet the demands of utilities for increased safety, reliability and robustness” and is operating in two reactors worldwide.
Another nuclear facility will employ a modified version of the HTP fuel assembly design to facilitate transition to longer fuel cycles up to 2030.