Solution Addresses Industry Challenge by Reducing Fuel Channel Bow in Boiling Water Reactors
WILMINGTON, NC—September 11, 2015—Global Nuclear Fuel (GNF) today announced that its newest boiling water reactor fuel innovation, NSF channels, has been approved for use by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
“NSF is an innovative solution designed to reduce channel bow and control rod blade interference, reducing the need for operational testing and allowing our customers to operate their plants with higher efficiency,” said Lance Hall, senior vice president, Nuclear Fuels and Services, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy. “Achieving this milestone paves the way for GNF to offer this innovative technology to our customers.”
Built with advanced manufacturing techniques and a proprietary combination of zirconium, niobium, tin and iron, NSF channel material is designed to be resistant to fluence gradient bow and shadow corrosion induced bow, two of the three major sources of fuel channel distortion.
NSF channels were first made available in lead use assemblies in 2002. Since then a total of more than 300 NSF channels have been loaded into BWR plants. Based on the performance of these assemblies a Licensing Topical Report was submitted to the NRC in 2013 and final approval for commercial application of the material was received September 2.
NSF channel material is available in reload quantities starting with outages in the spring of 2016. NSF will be standard on GNF3 bundles, which are scheduled to be available for full reloads in 2018.
Global Nuclear Fuel (GNF) is a world-leading supplier of boiling water reactor fuel, including uranium dioxide and MOX fuel and fuel-related engineering services. GNF is a GE-led joint venture with Hitachi, Ltd. and Toshiba Corporation and operates primarily through Global Nuclear Fuel-Americas, LLC in Wilmington, N.C., and Global Nuclear Fuel-Japan Co. Ltd. in Kurihama, Japan.
Based in Wilmington, N.C., GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) is a world-leading provider of advanced reactors and nuclear services. Established in June 2007, GEH is a global nuclear alliance created by GE and Hitachi to serve the global nuclear industry. The nuclear alliance executes a single, strategic vision to create a broader portfolio of solutions, expanding its capabilities for new reactor and service opportunities. The alliance offers customers around the world the technological leadership required to effectively enhance reactor performance, power output and safety.