The in-situ part of the dismantling of the first reactor pressure vessel of a commercially operated nuclear power plant in Sweden was successfully completed at the Barsebäck site.
In the first phase of the dismantling (in-situ), the reactor pressure vessel was thermally cut into rings with a height between 0.9 and 1.8 m, the so-called “barrel shells”. Each of these vessel sections weighs 12 to 24 tonnes. In this way, the entire reactor pressure vessel was pre-cut step by step from top to bottom into 13 rings plus the lower part of the reactor. The pre-cut rings were moved to post-segmentation zone and then cut into manageable pieces, which were then packed in special containers. A total of 430 tonnes were dismantled.
In 2019, the consortium UNNU, NUKEM Technologies and Uniper Anlagenservice, was awarded a contract for distmantling of two reactor pressure vessels in Oskarshamn and two reactor pressure vessels in Barsebäck. The dismantling will be carried out consecutively, starting in Barsebäck and then continuing to Oskarshamn, to ensure significant synergy effects in project implementation. During the last 13 months, the equipment has been constantly optimised so that the other three reactor pressure vessels can be dismantled even more efficiently and safely. The thermal cutting technology used has already been employed in several decommissioning projects in Germany. The entire consortium project is scheduled to be completed in Oskarshamn in 2024.
“This is an important milestone for the project and our company, proving the efficiency of thermal cutting technology for dismantling reactor pressure vessels. I am confident that with the proven technology, a strong project team and using all the lessons learned from the Barsebäck plant, we will dismantle the next three reactor pressure vessels in the contracted time with high quality and safety standards. I congratulate the team and all the stakeholders involved in this project on this success”, – said NUKEM Managing Director Sergey Molodtsov.
“The dismantling of the reactor pressure vessel in Sweden is the first reference of Rosatom for commercial BWR reactors. We look forward to reaching the next milestones in this important project,” said Vadim Sukhikh, Chairman of the NUKEM Advisory Board and Head of Integrator for decommissioning at ROSATOM’s TVEL Fuel Company.
NUKEM Technologies in Alzenau, Germany, is world-wide active in the areas of management of radioactive waste and spent fuel, decommissioning of nuclear facilities, engineering and consulting. Since 2021, NUKEM Technologies is part of Fuel Company TVEL (Industry Integrator in the business area ‘Decommissioning and management of the associated radioactive waste’ appointed by ROSATOM).