TVEL delivers upgraded equipment for China’s Yibinsk Fuel

19 May 2023

Rosatom fuel company TVEL has delivered to China upgraded equipment for the fuel fabrication plant at Yibin in Sichuan province. The plant is part of China National Nuclear Corporation’s CNNC’s fuel division. The state-of-the-art ultrasonic installation for quality control of fuel rod welds was manufactured at the Engineering Centre at Mashinostroitelny Zavod (MSZ) in Elektrostal.

The ultrasonic unit is designed in accordance with the requirements of the customer, has improved characteristics. These make it possible to control the length of the weld on the fuel rod using a high-precision scanning unit. It is equipped with a modern linear drive and a flaw detector, as well as adjustable stepper rotation motors, etc. The installation operates with a measuring error of up to 0.1 mm and a capacity of up to 90 items per hour.

The equipment is intended for a production line for the fabrication of Russian-designed nuclear fuel TVS-2M for VVER-1000 reactors. Currently, China operates four power units with reactor plants of this type at the Tianwan NPP (Jiansu Province). Fuel for VVER-1000 reactors has been produced at Yibin under licence from TVEL since 2009. Since 2014, the plant has been fabricating fuel assemblies of the TVS-2M design, which replaced the older UTVS type.

“TVEL Fuel Company continues to work with Chinese partners on projects for the manufacture of nuclear fuel using Russian technologies. For the first time in our history, we have helped to create a production of Russian-designed nuclear fuel abroad and continue to support it technologically at the most modern level,” said Oleg Grigoriev, Senior Vice President for Commerce & International Business at TVEL.

Image: TVEL has delivered upgraded equipment to China for the fuel fabrication plant at Yibin in Sichuan Province (courtesy of TVEL)

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