September 23, 2019

Framatome successfully completes feedwater heater replacement at Palo Verde Generating Station

Framatome successfully completed the first of 12 low-pressure feedwater heater replacements at Arizona Public Service’s Palo Verde Generating Station Unit 1 on an expedited schedule during the spring 2019 outage. The remaining replacements will take place over a more than seven-year campaign.

“It is rewarding to bring our latest technologies and expertise to support Palo Verde’s investment in the long-term operations of its power plant,” said Catherine Cornand, senior executive vice president of the Installed Base Business Unit at Framatome. “Framatome is a leading supplier in primary loop component replacements. Our outage services team works closely with customers worldwide, drawing on decades of experience to complete complex projects like this one to keep the nuclear fleet operating reliably.”

Feedwater heaters increase the performance of a nuclear energy facility by pre-heating water used in the steam generator. For this component’s replacement at Unit 1, the team leveraged 3D modeling for the component and piping design as well as precision measurements. The project team demonstrated its technical expertise to supply and install the 50 ton, low-pressure feedwater heater including removal and reinstallation of 24 sections of pipe and a total of 370 field welds.

The Palo Verde Generating Station’s three pressurized water reactors, each with a gross capacity to produce 1,400 megawatts of electricity, provide approximately 70 percent of Arizona’s clean air energy. Being the only U.S. nuclear plant not located on a body of water, Palo Verde Generating Station recycles municipal wastewater from Phoenix to cool the plant. Each year, the plant provides enough power to meet the needs of more than 4 million people across four states.