Westinghouse installs industry-first metal AM fuel debris filters at nuclear power plants

June 16, 2022

The additively manufactured StrongHold AM filters are said to offer enhanced capture features to prevent debris from entering the nuclear fuel assembly (Courtesy Westinghouse)
The additively manufactured StrongHold AM filters are said to offer enhanced capture features to prevent debris from entering the nuclear fuel assembly (Courtesy Westinghouse)

Westinghouse Electric Company LLC, a nuclear energy technology provider headquartered in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania, USA, has installed its StrongHold® AM additively manufactured nuclear fuel debris filters in two Nordic Boiling Water Reactor (BWR) units – Olkiluoto 2 in Finland and Oskarshamn 3 in Sweden – to further the plants’ operational reliability.

“As the first 3D-printed fuel debris filter for insertion in a nuclear power plant, the StrongHold AM marks a major milestone in our effort to further improve the BWR fuel reliability by leveraging advances in manufacturing technology,” stated Dr Carina Önneby, Westinghouse VP – EMEA Fuel Delivery.

Westinghouse created the StrongHold AM filter in close cooperation with plant operators Teollisuuden Voima Oyj (TVO) and OKG. The additively manufactured StrongHold AM filters are said to offer enhanced capture features to prevent debris from entering the fuel assembly and potentially damaging the cladding, which could cause unplanned and expensive outages.

“We can now gain important practical experience in the use of 3D printed metal products which will become an ever more important operational solution going forward. It is important to have a strong network of partners like Westinghouse who deploy Additive Manufacturing to drive enhanced capability,” added Arttu Knuutila, TVO Fuel Procurement Team Leader.

Commenting on the risk of fuel damages, Andreas Roos, Oskarshamn 3 Plant Manager, said, “Fuel damages can force us to temporarily suspend operations, which affects security of supply and entails unnecessary costs. Reducing the risk of fuel damages is very positive for our business.”

www.westinghousenuclear.com

The additively manufactured StrongHold AM filters are said to offer enhanced capture features to prevent debris from entering the nuclear fuel assembly (Courtesy Westinghouse)

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