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Construction of the first nuclear power plant (NPP) built by Kraftwerk Union (KWU) at Obrigheim in Germany began in 1965. It went on line four years later in 1969. KWU's pressurized water reactors (PWR) and boiling water reactors (BWRs) introduced advanced features to the market. The last KWU PWR plants were built in series: the three so-called Konvoi plants in Germany. The KWU design enables efficient outages and even permits entrance to the containment during operation. Original materials were well selected and subsequent optimizations (like water chemistry) permit long lifetime expectancy of valuable assets such as steam generators. However, KWU plant owners now face a number of challenges including new requirements of safety authorities, the phase-out of sister plants in Germany, lifetime restrictions in some European countries and supply chain issues including the long-term availability of spare parts.

KWU plant owners are organized in the KWU Owners Group in order to share knowledge and rapidly find solutions. Common goals and objectives make problem solving and lifetime management much easier.

As the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of KWU-built NPPs, we at Framatome have the know-how and know-why needed to support license renewal and long-term operation of these reactors. Our participation in the KWU Owners Group secures access to these resources for a long period. The group bundles spare part requirements which simplifies supplier management and reduces the number of interfaces and also the procurement costs of spare parts and equipment.

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