Framatome’s worldwide Technical Center


Pool of the Center for Experimentation and Validation of Intervention Techniques on PWR (CETIC)

Pool of the Center for Experimentation and Validation of Intervention Techniques on PWR (CETIC)

Engineering expertise, material testing and analysis, chemistry, radiochemistry, qualification, and thermal hydraulics

Nuclear Power Plant equipment operates under challenging environmental conditions and regulatory requirements. Framatome’s Technical Center contributes to their safe operation by actual testing, analyses and qualification engineering. For more than 60 years our in-house unique test facilities and laboratories have been supporting new reactors and component developments, manufacturing, engineering and plant maintenance.

In addition to internally supporting Framatome’s Business Units, we offer our expertise and services externally to different stakeholders, such as:

  • Nuclear new build projects
  • Nuclear operators
  • Nuclear equipment manufacturers and suppliers
  • Decommissioning projects, waste treatment facilities or disposal agencies
  • Nuclear-related and non-nuclear industries

Framatome’s Technical Center operates a unique laboratory and testing infrastructure at its sites in Le Creusot and St-Marcel (France), and in Erlangen and Karlstein (Germany). Combined with the long-lasting expertise of our staff, our customers can benefit from powerful solutions and services in the fields of:

All our services are conducted by a stringent quality assurance system following ISO 9001 and numerous procedures that are accredited according to the ISO 17025 standard.

Materials Testing and Expertise Solutions for the Whole Product Lifecycle

Video: Framatome Technical center: Material Technology Laboratories

Framatome Technical Center’s Materials Laboratory covers material solutions for the entire product life cycle:

  • Material specifications; material consulting; manufacturing process review
  • Welding consulting; WPS generation; WPQR qualification testing
  • Custom tailored corrosion testing; corrosion engineering
  • Integrated root cause analyses with definition of remedial actions
  • Mobile material analysis on-site and in-situ; metallography; electron-microscopy
  • Destructive material testing from -196°C to 1100°C
  • Numerical, analytical, and experimental fracture mechanics
  • Fitness-for-service assessments

The video provides a virtual walkdown of one of our laboratories located in Erlangen, Germany, highlighting the following activities:

  • Flexible Planning to answer customer regulations
  • Metallography
  • Optical microscopy
  • Mobile hardness testing
  • Tensile testing
  • Fracture mechanics testing
  • Numerical fracture mechanics
  • Fracture surface assessment
  • Custom tailored corrosion testing
  • Corrosion exposure testing

Our experts and laboratories offer services with quick response times in testing, analyses and engineering for basically all materials related topics such as:

  • Root Cause Analysis (RCA) and Fitness for Services (FFS) assessments
  • Materials testing: tensile, fracture toughness, resilience and fatigue testing
  • Analytical, numerical and experimental fracture mechanics
  • Materials consulting
  • Corrosion testing and engineering
  • Welding engineering, consulting and development of welding processes
  • Machining and additive manufacturing processes
  • Reactor Pressure Vessel (RPV) material surveillance program and testing of activated materials in Hot Cell laboratories

Find the right solution for your needs in Framatome’s Solution Portfolio:

Chemistry, Radiochemistry and Hot Cell Laboratories

Video: Framatome technical center: (Radio) chemistry and Hot Cell Laboratories

The video provides a virtual walkdown of one of our laboratories located in Erlangen, Germany, highlighting the following activities:

  • Chemical analyses for active and inactive samples
  • Gamma spectrometry
  • Alpha and beta spectrometry
  • Manufacturing of test specimen
  • Material examinations in Hot Cells, nano indention, metallography
  • Fracture mechanics sample preparation and testing, Electron beam welding, material testing
  • Scanning electron microscope
  • Focused Ion beam scanning electron microscope
  • Transmission electron microscope
  • Radiation protection and monitoring, incorporation monitoring

Our experts and laboratories offer their competencies in the following areas:

  • Chemical analysis for materials characterization, and identification
  • Radiochemical analysis for effluent, environmental surveillance and waste characterization
  • Radioprotection services
  • Hot Cells: mechanical testing, manufacturing of specimens and analysis for highly irradiated and activated materials

Find the right solution for your needs in Framatome’s Solution Portfolio:

Equipment Qualification

Video: Framatome technical center: Qualification services

Framatome’s Technical Center applies decades worldwide experience in qualification; e.g., more than 250 equipment types were qualified for EPR projects. Qualification experts are located in Paris, Le Creusot, Saint-Marcel, Erlangen and Karlstein. Various units carry accreditation as inspection body according ISO 17020 and as test body according ISO 17025.

Qualification Services are performed

  • For new build projects, modernizations and in course of obsolescence management
  • For all reactor designs
  • For nuclear power plant operators, reactor OEMs and for equipment suppliers
  • For I&C, electrical equipment, sensors, software pumps, valves, reactor internals, and nuclear equipment
  • By qualification strategy, engineering services, experience, data bases, actual qualification testing

Qualification is always very specific, contains equipment qualification and requires nuclear competency. The typical sequence is as follows: analysis of objectives and requirements; definition of the qualification strategy; securing the appropriate technical resources; performing studies, tests, audits and management; and to record the demonstration compliance. Framatome has recognized competences in nuclear equipment design, manufacturing, assessment, testing and operation. Based on this experience the best approach can be defined, such as qualification with minimal or no testing; new qualification; or analyzing the suitability. The experts are supported by a comprehensive database of already qualified equipment, and by their technical and regulatory competences in various global standards (such as IAEA, RCC-M, RCC-E, ASME, IEEE, IEC).

The video shows various testing infrastructure operated by Framatome:

  • Electrical equipment testing
  • Pump testing
  • Valve testing
  • Sensor testing
  • Nuclear equipment testing

Our long international experience in nuclear component qualification, our deep knowledge of different international standards and our in-house test facilities bring our customers the most comprehensive set of services for successful and risk-minimized qualification projects:

  • Equipment qualification engineering: services to set-up the qualification strategy, and to manage and perform actual qualification work
  • Equipment qualification testing: we manage your equipment qualification testing sequences using our in-house test facilities as well as external laboratories (if needed)
  • Equipment qualification preservation
  • Commercial grade dedication

Find the right solution for your needs in Framatome’s Solution Portfolio:

For operators of nuclear facilities and equipment suppliers

Thermal-hydraulic and Component Testing

Video: Framatome technical center: Thermohydraulic & Component Testing

Framatome’s Technical Center operates thermohydraulic and component testing at its sites in Le Creusot, France, as well as in Erlangen and Karlstein, Germany. We carry accreditation as inspection body according ISO 17020 and as test body according ISO 17025.

Thermohydraulic and component testing is performed for

  • PWR systems
  • BWR systems
  • Passive systems
  • LOCA debris transport
  • Heat transfer /CHF
  • Fluid induced vibrations
  • Flow characterization
  • Sensor development

Such testing is performed by full scale testing, separate effects testing, integral system testing or flow model testing. The video highlights several test stands for these activities.

We have been operating our thermal-hydraulic test loops (several of them unique in the world) and test benches for more than 40 years. We offer the most comprehensive testing scope for all kinds of components for qualification purposes, as well as for design or code validation. Our long experience provides substantial benefits to our customers in the fields of:

  • Component qualification testing:
    • Test loops for pumps, valves, instrumentation, filtration systems
    • Shaking tables, climatic chambers, LOCA and post-LOCA chambers
  • Full scale system testing for PWR and BWR systems
  • Mechanical testing (flow induced vibration, wear, tribology test benches)
  • Separate effect test loops
  • Test loop design and manufacturing
  • Process Monitoring

Find the right solution for your needs in Framatome’s Solution Portfolio:

Our quality assurances and certifications

In addition to Framatome’s ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 certification, our test facilities and laboratories offers you the highest degree of traceability, independency and reliability thanks to dedicated DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 and NF EN ISO/IEC 17025 accreditations as test laboratories and the DIN EN ISO/IEC 17020 accreditation as inspection body for the activities and services as listed in the appendices of the respective certificates available on the following DAkkS and COFRAC Websites: