Michele Kearney's Nuclear Wire

Major Energy and Environmental News and Commentary affecting the Nuclear Industry.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Updates from i-Nuclear


Areva Q1 2012 revenue up 2.4% on Q1 2011

by I-Nuclear
Areva generated consolidated revenue of 2.026 billion euros in the first quarter of 2012, up 2.4% compared with the same period in 2011, the company said April 26.
The increase in revenue in the Mining Business Group (+11.9%), the Reactors & Services Business Group (+5.8%) and the Renewable Energies Business Group (+198.2%) offset the expected decrease in revenue in the Front End Business Group (-17.2%), Areva said April 26.
The Front End BG reported revenue of 432 million euros for the first quarter of 2012, a decrease of 17.2% compared with the first quarter of 2011.
Revenue from the enrichment business decreased, following a decrease in volumes delivered over the period due to the expiration of the legacy contract with EDF for enrichment services from the Georges Besse plant, Areva said.
The gaseous diffusion uranium enrichment plant, Georges Besse, owned and operated by EURODIF is preparing for permanent shutdown. Production phase-out is scheduled to start beginning May 13, 2012, Areva said.
The Georges Besse II plant, using more modern centrifuge technology, continued to ramp up; 22 cascades were in operation at the end of March (an increase of 6 cascades compared with December 2011), in line with the schedule of the project, Areva said.
In the fuel business, revenue was down as the schedule of deliveries was less favorable than those in the first quarter of 2011.
Order cancellations for the Areva group as a result of the Fukushima accident totaled 612 million euros at March 31, 2012, compared with 464 million euros at December 31, 2011, the company said.
In the first quarter of 2012, the Front End BG activities included:
• a contract with EDF to supply fuel assemblies and related services in 2013 and 2014. EDF and AREVA also decided to negotiate a mid- to long-term frame agreement for fuel element fabrication, thus strengthening their strategic partnership in nuclear fuel supply;
• an extension to the 2006 contract with FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company for fuel supply to the David Besse nuclear power plant in northwestern Ohio, US, under which AREVA will supply six batches of fuel and related engineering services starting in 2014;
• several contracts with US utilities in the enrichment service business.

Reactor & Services

The Reactors & Services BG reported first quarter 2012 revenue of 782 million euros, a year-on-year increase of 5.8%. Foreign exchange had a positive impact of 6 million euros; changes in consolidation scope had a negative impact of 8 million euros.
Revenue rose in Installed Base Services, benefiting from the replacement of primary system components in France and from a strong outage business in the United States, offsetting the drop in demand in Germany, Areva said.
The main new orders booked in the first quarter were:
•a contract with EDF for vessel inspections in all 58 nuclear reactors in France (this 10-year agreement starts in 2012, with an option for 5 additional years);
• a contract with the Canadian firm SNC-Lavalin Nucléaire for the supply of ventilation systems for the containment buildings of Units 1 and 2 of the Cernavoda nuclear power plant in Romania.
• Revenue evolution in the New Builds business is in line with progress on major reactor projects (Olkiluoto 3, Flamanville 3 and Taishan 1 and 2). Their contribution to the BG's revenue is declining, consistent with their current stages of completion.
Reported revenue is also beginning to reflect the first engineering and forgings contracts for reactors that EDF plans to build in the UK.

Olkiluoto-3 Update

The Olkiluoto 3 project in Finland (Areva scope: a complete power plant, as part of a consortium with Siemens) is now more than 80% complete and the testing and fine-tuning phase is beginning. Electromechanical work is more than 70% complete.
Finishing work is in full swing, supporting the start of mechanical component testing. The primary system components have been installed and inspected. All fuel handling equipment is in place and testing has begun.
The provisional operating organization formed by TVO and the Consortium is filling the cooling system with sea water. Electrical testing continues in the turbine building and is beginning in the nuclear island buildings. TVO is using the operations simulator installed at the site.
The operational readiness report is being updated for presentation to the safety authority at the end of the year.
The detailed report on the instrumentation and control system architecture will also be delivered by the end of the year for in-depth review by the safety authority.
The consortium’s commissioning teams are in place and are cooperating more and more closely with TVO teams to prepare the system testing sequences, the so-called integration tests and the phases leading up to fuel loading upon fuel receipt.
Thus, the first quarter of 2012 marks the completion of construction and ramp-up of testing, as well as the preparation of start-up for this first-of-a-kind EPR reactor.

Flamanville-3 Update

At the Flamanville 3 jobsite in France (Areva scope: a nuclear steam supply system), work is proceeding according to the customer’s schedule.  On July 20, 2011, project operator EDF announced a schedule calling for the sale of the first kilowatt-hours of electricity in 2016.
In Areva’s scope, 93% of the procurement has been completed and engineering is almost 100% complete -- the remaining work is almost exclusively related to changes made by the customer, Areva said.
Equipment manufacturing is also progressing well and the first hydraulic tests have been completed for all four steam generators and reactor coolant pump casings, Areva said.
Concerning manufacturing of the vessel head, which had been interrupted when non-compliant welds were detected, the French nuclear safety authority ASN approved the repair operation in late February 2012.
Areva restarted repair operations at its Chalon/Saint-Marcel plant as planned in the compliance schedule, with no impact on the reactor construction schedule.
In the first quarter of 2012, ASN also lifted its October 2009 reservations on the architecture of the instrumentation and control system for the Flamanville 3 EPR reactor based on the responses provided.
Platform testing of version 2 of the TELEPERM XS safety instrumentation and control system is being finalized. Design activities for version 3 of the system were launched in the first quarter of 2012, Areva said.

Taishan Update

At the Taishan jobsite in China (Areva scope: two nuclear islands), major achievements have been recorded in the first quarter of 2012, Areva said.
Delivery of the main components continued on schedule, including delivery of the remaining heavy equipment of the primary cooling system of Unit 1 (steam generators, pressuriser and vessel internals).
Areva began testing the polar crane in February. These activities, which will allow the customer to install the reactor vessel, are progressing successfully.
The nuclear island for Unit 2 is being built at the same time and is only about 6 months behind that of Unit 1 (based on the percentage of completion of the two reactor buildings).
In March, the Areva project team in charge of providing technical assistance to the customer for installation and testing was deployed to the site.

Other R&S Developments

On January 31, 2012, Areva and its partners submitted a bid to the Finnish utility Fennovoima for the construction of an EPR nuclear power plant at Pyhäjoki in Northern Ostrobothnia, Finland. The bid includes engineering, procurement and construction of the entire nuclear power plant, including the reactor and the turbine.
On February 8, 2012, the ATMEA company received the final report from the French nuclear safety authority ASN on the safety options for the generation III+ ATMEA1 pressurized water reactor.
The ASN concluded that the ATMEA1 reactor’s safety options, which take into account internal and external risks and the first lessons learned from the Fukushima accident as analyzed by ATMEA, are consistent with French regulations, Areva said.
On February 17, 2012, Areva signed a memorandum of understanding with EDF for the delivery of nuclear steam supply systems and instrumentation and control systems for the Hinkley Point C EPR project in the United Kingdom. The agreement also confirms the schedule for completion of contract negotiations.
On February 17, 2012, Areva and Rolls Royce signed a memorandum of understanding to expand their cooperation, which encompasses the manufacturing of components for new nuclear power plants and other nuclear projects in the United Kingdom and elsewhere. This agreement is further to the industrial cooperation agreement signed by the two companies in March 2011.
On March 5, 2012, Areva signed a series of memoranda of understanding with Czech companies as part of its strategy to select a network of local suppliers in regions identified for development of EPR projects, including the Temelin 3 and 4 one, in the Czech Republic.
On March 29, 2012, the German utilities E.ON and RWE npower, partners in the Horizon Nuclear Power joint venture (HNP), announced that they would not pursue their plan to build a nuclear power plant at the Wylfa site in North Wales, United Kingdom. The decision by E.ON and RWE is motivated by the German government’s decision to phase out nuclear power and by the economic and financial crisis. They are looking for buyers for the Horizon project, which they consider very attractive. At the same time, Areva confirms its commitment to the development of low-carbon power generation solutions in the United Kingdom.

Mining Business Group

For the first quarter of 2012, the Mining BG reported revenue of 313 million euros, an increase of 11.9% in relation to the first quarter of 2011. Foreign exchange had a positive impact of 14 million euros.
Among the contracts signed in the first quarter of 2012, a significant contract was signed for the supply of 2,000 tons of U3O8 with an Asian customer, Areva said.
Revenue was buoyed by the increased volumes delivered in the first quarter (+136 MTU), despite an average sales price that was slightly lower than in the first quarter of 2011, due to a less favorable mix of contracts fulfilled during the period.
On February 10, 2012, in order to secure the supply chain and competitiveness of the French nuclear power program, EDF and Areva agreed on the principles of a long-term partnership for natural uranium supply over the 2014-2030 period.
I-Nuclear | April 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Categories: Areva | URL: http://wp.me/p22dAl-e8

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