Areva, CEA secure EUR650m funding to develop ASTRID sodium-cooled Generation IV reactor

France has allocated EUR650m ($890m) for the development of a prototype Generation-IV nuclear reactor with a goal of operation in 2020.
Areva and CEA (French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission) have signed an agreement on initial design studies for a prototype of the sodium-cooled fast reactor known as ASTRID.  This will allow the French government to decide in 2017 whether to go ahead with the construction of this demonstration facility.
This cooperative effort will bring together the CEA's R&D teams and Areva's unique skills and experience in the design of nuclear reactors. Areva will be responsible for designing the nuclear steam supply system, the nuclear auxiliaries and the instrumentation and control system.
For its part, the CEA will lead the overall project and will design the reactor core and fuel. Partnerships for other essential engineering work packages, such as civil engineering and the turbine, are currently being finalized.  The joint effort by Areva and the CEA will involve more than 250 persons by the end of 2010, and exceed 350 by the end of 2012.
The goal is to build a reactor for demonstrating innovative design choices so that the fast neutron reactors (FNR) can meet the criteria for the fourth generation:
- enhanced recycling of nuclear material,
- robust safety demonstration that gives ASTRID the same safety level as the EPR,
- high level of availability and reliability for operators,
- compliance with the requirements for anti-proliferation measures.
Operating with a sodium-cooled fast neutron core, ASTRID is expected to produce approximately 600 MW of electricity. Before construction of a first-off commercial unit, a demonstration facility is needed to test innovations with respect to previous FNRs.
The FNR greatly improves the amount of energy derived from depleted or reprocessed natural uranium, enables plutonium to be used and recycled several times and can recycle minor actinides if needed. Such reactors are currently being built or are on the drawing board in India, Russia, China and Japan.
In scenarios for the 21st century, they could begin commercial operation toward the middle of the century and complement light water reactors such as Areva's EPR for enhanced flexibility in managing nuclear waste.
There are three principal milestones in the schedule of design studies for the ASTRID prototype: completion of the first phase of the preliminary design in 2012 (AVP1), completion of the second phase in 2014 (AVP2) and the detailed design phase.

Sponsored by FLSmidth
Recommend this article Recommend this article () You recommended this article You recommended this article ()
Follow Power Engineering on Twitter

Products Showcase

Dynamic Fluoride Ion cleaning DFIC of industrial natural gas turbines Hi-Tech Furnace Systems

Dynamic Fluoride Ion Cleaning of IGT Parts

The Dynamic Fluoride Ion Cleaning (DFIC) Process from Hi-Tech Furnace Systems is able to clean deep, narrow cracks of oxides by cycling between negative, atmospheric, and positive pressure.

Latest News

Shutterstock coal production trucks

Weekly Coal Production

The Weekly Coal Production shows how much coal is being produced across the U.S.

Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Weekly Economic Indicators financial business

The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas' Economic Indicators

The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas offers a glimpse into how the markets are doing domestical...

Kvaerner awarded contract for gas-fired power plant in Delaware

Kvaerner North American Construction Inc. and its joint venture partner, Parsons Brinckerhoff...

Canadian Solar purchases two solar projects

Canadian Solar Inc. has acquired a majority interest in two utility-scale solar power project...

Operators Restart Unit 2 at PPL Susquehanna

Unit 2 at the PPL Susquehanna nuclear power plant near Berwick, Pa. resumed generating electr...

Settlement agreement limits cost recovery at Edwardsport

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) on Dec. 27 modified and approved a settlemen...

Toshiba in talks to sell portion of Westinghouse nuclear unit

Toshiba Corp is in talks  to sell up to 16% of its stake in the Westinghouse Electric Co...

Utah nixes nuclear waste storage facility

Plans to park radioactive waste at a storage facility in Utah have been officially called off.

Archived Articles

2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013

Power Engineering Current Issue

Volume 118, Issue 3

Buyers Guide Company Listings

Phoenix Electric Corp

Designer, manufacturer, and installer of specialty switchgear, custom-designed air-core, cylindrically wound reactors, and associated systems.

BPEG Reactors

An internal production management entity including production and sales. The products include reactors, line trap, line tuner, transformer, arc-suppression coil and earthing transformer.

Hans von Mangoldt Reactors

Power Industry Wire News

Holloman Energy Corporation PEL 444 and 112 Updates

Holloman Energy Corporation PEL 444 and 112 Updates

UL Workplace Health & Safety Honored as Learning! 100 Award Winner for Innovation in Training

UL Workplace Health & Safety Honored as Learning! 100 Award Winner for Innovation in Tr...

Green Mountain Power and NRG Energy Partner to Make Vermont a National Leader in Sustainable Energy

Green Mountain Power and NRG Energy Partner to Make Vermont a National Leader in Sustai...

Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. to Present at the Barclays CEO Energy-Power Conference

Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. to Present at the Barclays CEO Energy-Power Conference

Cardinal Energy Acquires the Fortune Lease

Cardinal Energy Acquires the Fortune Lease

Power Engineering

Article Archives for Power Engineering Magazine

Continuing Education

Professional Development Hours

To access a course listing associated to a specific topic listed below, click on the topic of choice from the list below.

Latest Energy Jobs

View more Job Listings >>