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Scientists of Russia’s Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) are investigating the behaviour of welded joints made of E110 zirconium alloy, obtained by means of laser welding with the aim of developing accident tolerant fuel.

Date: Friday, 14 January 2022
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsrussian-scientists-develop-chrome-coatings-to-protect-fuel-assemblies-9401086

Framatome said on 15 December it had secured a new four-year cooperative agreement and the US Department of Energy (DOE) valued at more than $150 million to continue development of its PROtect enhanced accident tolerant fuel (EATF) technology.

Date: Wednesday, 22 December 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsframatome-and-us-doe-agree-to-cooperate-further-on-accident-tolerant-fuel-9337040

Rosatom on 20 September began pilot operation of fuel elements of a new generation of Russian accident tolerant fuel (ATF) at unit 2 of the Rostov NPP.

Date: Tuesday, 28 September 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsrussia-begins-pilot-operation-of-accident-tolerant-fuel-9111156

A Russian-made AFT bundle of the type loaded at Rostov-2. Courtesy Tvel. The first Russian-made fuel bundles containing experimental advanced technology fuel (ATF) rods have been loaded into VVER-1000 reactor core at Unit 2 of the Rostov nuclear power station in southwest Russia.

Each of the three combined TVS-2M fuel assemblies, designed for Russia’s VVER-1000 power reactors, contains 12 experimental fuel rods. Six of them have their cladding made of chromium-nickel alloy, and the other six have a standard zirconium alloy cladding with chromium coating.

The fuel was loaded into the 950-MW plant during a scheduled maintenance and refuelling and the plant has now returned to service.

Date: Wednesday, 22 September 2021
Original article: nucnet.org/news/first-fuel-bundles-containing-atf-loaded-at-rostov-2-nuclear-plant-9-1-2021

Advanced fuel assemblies have begun an operational trial at Russia's Rostov nuclear power plant. Fuel manufacturer TVEL said if successful they would provide a higher level of performance and safety. "Fuel irradiation in a commercial reactor is an important step for the further commercialisation of this product," said Natalia Nikipelova, president of TVEL, adding: "It is symbolic that this milestone is achieved when TVEL celebrates its 25th anniversary."

Date: Wednesday, 22 September 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Trial-of-advanced-fuel-begins-at-Rostov

The US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Oak Ridge National Laboratory ORNL said on 3 August that it is to examine Westinghouse Accident Tolerant Fuel (ATF). ORNL recently received several nuclear fuel test rods that were irradiated in a commercial reactor. The new advanced fuel concept is being developed by Westinghouse through DOE’s ATF programme. The industry-led effort is looking to commercialise new fuels within the decade to help improve the performance and economics of US reactors. ORNL will examine the irradiated fuel rods over the next year to support licensing efforts with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). 

Date: Friday, 06 August 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsoak-ridge-national-laboratory-to-examine-westinghouse-accident-tolerant-fuel-8969081

Irradiated lead test rods containing Westinghouse's EnCore advanced fuel technology have arrived at the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) where they will undergo a year of testing to support regulatory licensing efforts. The fuel is being developed under the DOE's Accident Tolerant Fuel Program, an industry-led effort looking to commercialise new fuels within the decade.

Date: Thursday, 05 August 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Westinghouse-ATF-makes-progress-towards-approval

France’s Framatome said on 12 July that the first reload of its GAIA Enhanced Accident Tolerant Fuel (EATF) had been installed in a US pressurised water reactor (PWR). The 64 fuel assemblies, manufactured at Framatome’s fuel fabrication facility in Richland, Washington, were loaded into the reactor as part of a standard spring refuelling outage.

Date: Friday, 16 July 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsus-npp-sees-first-reload-of-framatomes-gaia-fuel-8898277

A Framatome employee inspects a Gaia fuel assembly Courtesy Framatome. The first reload of Framatome’s Gaia advanced accident-tolerant nuclear fuel has been installed in a US pressurised water reactor unit.

The French company said 64 fuel assemblies manufactured at its fuel fabrication facility in Richland, Washington, were loaded into the reactor as part of a standard spring refuelling outage.

It did not name the plant where the fuel had been loaded. In April 2019, Framatome said the first Gaia assemblies had been loaded into the reactor core of Unit 2 at Georgia’s Vogtle nuclear power plant.

Lionel Gaiffe, senior executive vice-president, fuel business unit at Framatome, said Gaia is the company’s most advanced pressurised water reactor fuel design. The fuel has several advanced features that provide added safety and economic benefits to nuclear plant operators.

Date: Wednesday, 14 July 2021
Original article: nucnet.org/news/first-reload-of-gaia-fuel-completed-at-us-pwr-7-2-2021

OECD experts foresee that accident tolerant fuels (ATF) will dominate the nuclear fuel market within 10 to 20 years. This is a very short timeframe by the standards of the nuclear industry, where reactor research and preparation alone can take up to a decade, writes Natalia Nikipelova, president of Russian nuclear fuel manufacturer TVEL. Such an optimistic forecast means that ATF is a product very much anticipated by the market. After all, ensuring nuclear safety - that there will be no serious consequences even in the event of incidents as grave as Fukushima - is a crucial step towards increasing public acceptance of nuclear energy. And, as we all know, where there is demand, supply will follow.

Date: Thursday, 03 June 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Viewpoint-How-ATF-could-shape-the-nuclear-fuel-mar