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L-3 Mapps to Develop Gas-Cooled Reactor Models for British Energy

L-3 MAPPS, a subsidiary of L-3 Communications, announced today that British Energy Generation Ltd. has awarded a follow-on contract to replace the reactor core models on the Hartlepool and Heysham 1 simulators. The new reactor model for the Hartlepool simulator is due to be in service in the summer of 2008, followed by a similar installation at the end of 2008 for the Heysham 1 simulator.

The Hartlepool power station, in service since August 1983, is made up of two Advanced Gas-cooled Reactors (AGRs), generating 1,210 MW on the northeast coast of England. The Heysham Stage 1 power station on the northwest coast of England, also with two AGRs with an electrical output of 1,150 MW, started generation in July 1983. AGRs are unique to the UK and it is the first time that L-3 MAPPS’ advanced reactor model generation utility – Orchid™ Core Builder – will be applied to AGRs. AGRs use slightly enriched uranium dioxide clad with stainless steel; and carbon dioxide is the coolant gas used.

Until recently, Hartlepool was the only station in British Energy’s fleet without its own dedicated local simulator facility. Hartlepool operators were receiving training on a simulator located at the Heysham site on the northwest coast of England, serving both the Heysham Stage 1 and Hartlepool power stations. To improve several aspects of performance, the shared simulator’s software was re-hosted to PC/Windows-based computers running L-3s modern simulation environment with advanced instructor station capabilities. In addition, a replica control room was built for the Hartlepool simulator. The new Hartlepool simulator was put into service on March 1, 2007. L-3 MAPPS also modernized the Heysham Stage 1 power station simulator, which went into service on August 6, 2007.

“As British Energy continues to modernize its simulator fleet, L-3 has delivered great results on the Sizewell B, Hartlepool and Heysham 1 simulators thus far,” said Michael Chatlani, Vice President, Marketing and Sales, L-3 MAPPS Power Systems and Simulation. “We are delighted to be a major contributor to British Energy’s simulator modernization strategy and look forward to the challenge of deploying first-of-a-kind reactor core models for Hartlepool and Heysham 1.”


An FTSE 100 company, British Energy Group plc is the UK’s largest producer of electricity and the lowest carbon emitter of the major UK electricity generators. British Energy generates around one-sixth of the nation’s electricity with a dedicated workforce of about 6,000 skilled professionals operating eight nuclear power stations and one coal-fired power station with a combined capacity of almost 12,000 MW.


L-3 MAPPS has over 20 years of experience in pioneering technological advances in the marine automation field and over 30 years of experience in delivering high-fidelity power plant simulation to leading utilities worldwide. In addition, the company has more than three decades of expertise in supplying plant computer systems for Canadian heavy water reactors. L-3 MAPPS also provides targeted controls and simulation solutions to the space sector.

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