July 20, 2020

Framatome delivers first fuel reload to the largest power producer in the U.S.

July 20, 2020: Framatome delivered its first nuclear fuel reload to the largest power producer in the U.S. The 100 fuel assemblies were manufactured at Framatome’s fuel fabrication facility in Richland, Washington, and inserted into the reactor at the nuclear energy facility as part of the spring refueling outage completed in May.

Framatome delivered its advanced CE-16 HTP fuel technology, which offers the plant increased fuel supply security while improving operating performance and lowering fuel costs. The company also provided fuel engineering support services from its U.S. headquarters in Lynchburg, Virginia.

"Our customer identified a need to diversify and secure its fuel supply,” said Lionel Gaiffe, senior executive vice president, Fuel Business Unit at Framatome. “Our team of experts worked with the utility to secure regulatory approvals, make this transition and ultimately realize long-term operational and cost benefits.”

Framatome supported the completion and submission of the license amendment request to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), allowing the utility to transition to the CE-16 HTP fuel. Framatome provided mechanical fuel assembly design, tests and analysis, including thermal-hydraulic compatibility and loss of cooling analysis (LOCA). Framatome engineers helped in-house experts perform non-LOCA safety, thermal-hydraulic and set-point analyses as part of the licensing effort. The NRC subsequently approved the request, enabling the plant to use Framatome’s advanced fuel.

Framatome’s Fuel Business Unit develops, designs, licenses and fabricates fuel assemblies and core components for pressurized water, boiling water and research reactors.