AREVA has completed decontamination of primary loop elements at the Chooz A nuclear power plant located in northern France.
The company said that it has decontaminated four steam generators, the pressuriser and the primary loop lines.
AREVA has used two of its techniques, the CORD UV and the AMDA, for the decontamination process.
The operation is based on the progressive introduction of chemical substances into the primary circuit, which circulates in there for several days, until the end of the process.
AREVA reduced the degree of the components’ radioactivity through the process, so that they could be classified as ‘very low-level waste’.
In order to store the decontaminated components, they were transported to a National Radioactive Waste Management Agency (Andra) facility.
Compared to alternative solutions, AREVA claimed that its decontamination technology produces a very low volume of radioactive waste, which is also managed by Andra.
Once the process is completed, the used chemicals are decomposed to carbon dioxide and water, leaving behind no additional waste.
AREVA installed base business unit executive vice-president Philippe Samama said, "The successful completion of this operation testifies to the effectiveness of our process.
"For more than 35 years, this proven, efficient and economical solution has enabled AREVA to decontaminate the components of more than 30 nuclear power plants worldwide, including in Germany, Japan, China and the United States."
Image: Areva will use CORD UV and AMDA for the decontamination process. Photo: courtesy of Freedigitalphotos.