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New-build projects are making progress, but governments are still struggling with finding the right financing package for large reactors The delayed Flamanville-3 is one of three EPR units under construction in Europe. The others are at Olkiluoto in Finland and Hinkley Point in the UK. Photo courtesy EDF. Western Europe

The UK is facing a major challenge to replace its aging fleet of Generation I nuclear power plants, many of which are scheduled to shut down in 2023.

The project by French state utility EDF to build two Generation III EPR units at Hinkley Point C in Somerset is on track for connection to the grid by 2025. Once in commercial operation the two units will provide up to 7% of the total electricity demand. Two similar units are planned for the Sizewell site in Suffolk.

However, press reports have suggested EDF is in “a race against time” to secure a funding deal for Sizewell C as delays risk making the project prohibitively expensive.

According to The Times newspaper EDF has hired Rothschild as financial adviser for the project and says it wants a “definitive way forward” from the government this year so it can start construction in 2022.

Date: Friday, 17 January 2020
Original article: nucnet.org/news/what-lies-in-store-in-2020-1-4-2020

Framatome earlier this year applied its ultra-high pressure (UHP) cavitation peening process on reactor vessel primary nozzles at Dominion Energy's Millstone nuclear power plant in Waterford, Connecticut. This marked the first underwater application of this maintenance technique on reactor pressure vessel nozzles to primary pipe welds.

Date: Wednesday, 20 November 2019
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Framatome-implements-cavitation-peening-at-Millsto

France’s Framatome said on 28 October it had opened the new SPEC 200 manufacturing facility at its Operational Centre of Excellence in Lynchburg, Virginia, completing transfer of the factory from China to the USA.

Date: Friday, 01 November 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsframatome-opens-spec-200-facility-in-usa-7482184

Leonam Guimaraes, president of Brazil's state nuclear power company Eletronuclear, told Reuters that Brazil plans to complete the delayed unit 3 at its Angra NPP in partnership with either China's National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC), France's EDF or Russia state nuclear corporation Rosatom.

Date: Wednesday, 30 October 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsbrazil-seeks-partners-to-complete-angra-3-7478476

French nuclear company Framatome said on 9 October that, together with US company Lockheed Martin it had completed the installation and site acceptance testing of a new Engineered Safety Features Actuation System (ESFAS) replacement for unit 2 of Exelon Generation’s Calvert Cliffs nuclear plant.

Date: Tuesday, 15 October 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsframatome-and-lockheed-complete-new-analogue-system-for-calvert-cliffs-7451985

French utility EDF said on 18 September that the discovery of problems with weldings at some of its nuclear reactors would not lead to any closures.

Date: Tuesday, 24 September 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsedf-says-no-french-reactors-will-close-because-of-manufacturing-deviations-7419325

Framatome-Siemens, the French-German consortium, has been contracted to supply main instrumentation and control (I&C) systems for the Hanhikivi 1 nuclear power plant. All the major suppliers for the project have now been selected.

The main building contractor Titan-2 has reached an agreement with Framatome-Siemens to supply automation for the Hanhikivi-1 power plant. According to the contract, Framatome will supply the safety automation systems and Siemens will be the operational I&C systems supplier.

“I&C contract is an important milestone for the entire Hanhikivi-1 project. Framatome-Siemens has experience in both Finnish safety requirements and Russian VVER technology. Now when all the major suppliers have been selected, the design and licensing work can proceed according to our schedule,” says Jouni Takakarhu, Project Director at Fennovoima and continues “We already have almost 1000 approved supply contracts in the project.”.

Fennovoima was involved in the negotiations as the owner of the project, ensuring that the Hanhikivi 1 power plant’s I&C systems will be supplied by one of the most recognized companies in the field.

“Framatome and Siemens will be involved in design, implementation and analysis of the automation solutions of the Hanhikivi 1 plant. Our goal is to get the construction license in 2021. Before that the preliminary safety analysis report must be completed and submitted to Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK). As the related basic design work progresses, we are also preparing for the construction stage. There is still a lot of work to be done to meet the Finnish requirements in preparing the entire supply chain for the construction start,” says Timo Okkonen, COO of Fennovoima.

The I&C systems of the nuclear power plant provide the control, protection and monitoring functions needed to ensure safe and reliable plant operation.

Date: Wednesday, 02 October 2019
Original article: sttinfo.fi/tiedote/framatome-siemens-to-supply-hanhikivi-1-nuclear-power-plants-main-automation?publisherId=68761840&releaseId=69866524

Framatome has completed the first of 12 low-pressure feedwater heater replacements at Arizona Public Service's Palo Verde nuclear power plant as part of a seven-year campaign to replace all the feedwater heaters at the three-unit plant.

Date: Wednesday, 25 September 2019
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Feedwater-heater-replaced-at-Palo-Verde

French utility EDF said on 10 September that it had discovered problems with the weldings and other components in some of its reactors, causing its shares to fall more than 8% as a result of concerns about possible reactor closures.

Date: Thursday, 12 September 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsmore-problems-for-frances-reactors-7407731

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The EPR reactor at unit 2 of China’s Taishan NPP in Guangdong province reached full generating capacity for the first time, France’s Framatome announced on 9 August. Taishan 2 is expected to enter commercial operation later this year. Taishan NPP is owned by the Guangdong Taishan Nuclear Power Joint Venture Company Limited (TNPJVC) comprising EDF (30%) and China General Nuclear (CGN). Unit 1 began construction in 2009, followed by unit 2 in 2010. Taishan 1 achieved first criticality and was connected to the grid in June 2018, beginning commercial operation in December. Unit 2 achieved criticality in May and was connected to the grid in June.
Date: Tuesday, 27 August 2019
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newschinas-taishan-2-reaches-full-capacity-7378894