September 26, 2016

AREVA NP Deploys New Ultrasonic Testing Technique, Reducing Duration and Dosage

CHARLOTTE, N.C., September 26, 2016 – During a recent U.S. outage, AREVA NP demonstrated new ultrasonic testing techniques that successfully included off-axis inspection for cracks in a boiling water reactor’s core shroud welds. The new approach pairs a phased array technique and a specialized multi-axis manipulator.

“AREVA NP’s development of this new technique and manipulator will save our customers significant examination time and, more importantly, personnel radiation exposure,” said Craig Ranson, senior vice president of Installed Base Services at AREVA Inc. “We are the first supplier to implement a fully demonstrated and documented method for off-axis flaw detection and characterization.”

The nuclear energy industry regularly uses ultrasonic tools to inspect for cracks parallel to the core shroud weld. However, some core shroud exams indicated perpendicular or “off-axis” cracking. As a result, AREVA NP developed the new consolidated tool to generate ultrasonic testing at multiple orientations, helping to accurately detect and characterize all flaws surrounding the weld.

AREVA NP’s new delivery manipulator for the enhanced ultrasonic technique features a rotational and extending feature, which enables horizontal and vertical weld examinations without removing the tooling from the reactor for orientation.

In alignment with industry best practices, this new technique incorporates the latest interim guidance on off-axis flaw detection and sizing from the Electric Power Research Institute’s Boiling Water Reactor Vessel and Internals Project.