This new system, which measures the degree of burnup of nuclear fuel already in use, represents an innovative advance in the design of this type of equipment, making it lighter and more versatile
The Korean fuel company KEPCO-NF has notified ENUSA of the award of a contract for the supply of new equipment (SICOM-NG-FA) that measures the degree of burnup of fuel assemblies already used in nuclear power plants. This award represents the first contract with a company from this Asian country and is the result of an internationally competitive tender called by this company at the end of October 2020.
KEPCO-NF is a public entity dedicated to the design and fabrication of nuclear fuel in South Korea. This is the first time that ENUSA has supplied this country and also the first time that this new technology has been commercialised in international markets. In this sense, this operation represents the beginning of a commercial relationship with the Asian country, as well as an opportunity for collaboration between a Spanish and Korean company in the management of spent fuel. Knowledge of irradiated fuel is an essential condition when dealing with the future dismantling of nuclear power plants.
This line of business could make Spain a world leader in the manufacture and supply of this technology.
This system, the development of which began in 2007, is used to measure average burnup and determine burnup profiles in fuel assemblies. This equipment, operated by ENUSA, has been used in inspection campaigns at Spanish nuclear power plants and must now be adapted to the different fuel designs operating in the Asian country.
This new technology used for spent fuel characterisation represents an innovative advance in the design of this type of equipment, which is much lighter and more versatile than the previous ones. Its implementation becomes a differentiating element for certifying the characteristics of spent fuel and optimises its management with a view to its future storage.
This contract for the supply of this equipment, whose technology was developed in its entirety by ENUSA, represents a major challenge both in terms of the aforementioned adaptations and the time required for its delivery.
The award of this contract is further proof of ENUSA’s commitment to technological innovation and internationalisation, and recognition from one of the most important companies in the nuclear sector in Asia.