Orano has been awarded a contract worth several million euros with the CEA at Marcoule to dismantle the entirety of the stainless steel walls and metal structure of the two former used fuel interim storage pools in the south-east of France. This unprecedented worksite on the Marcoule site is to commence shortly and will be one of the largest dismantling projects of its type carried out in France.
The project, lasting a total of four years, will include technical studies and the performance of dismantling operations. After being cut up, the elements will be sorted according to radiological activity, then conditioned and removed to an approved waste disposal center.
Studies and interventions in the field will be performed by teams from Orano DS, the entity of the group specialized in dismantling, services to nuclear operators and radioactive waste management.
To carry out these operations successfully, they will be employing innovative technologies never used before on this type of worksite. The dismantling will be carried out by the largest remote cutting machine available on the market. Equipped with a large-diameter circular saw, this tool weighing over 12 metric tons will be controlled remotely, allowing the radiological exposure of operators to be limited while optimizing completion times.
Alain Vandercruyssen, Senior Executive Vice President in charge of Orano’s Dismantling and Services business unit, declared: "It makes us proud to see that the technical solution developed by the teams from Orano DS has been selected by the CEA. The challenge and the resources involved are considerable but I have full confidence in our ability to complete this unprecedented worksite at Marcoule successfully, thus serving as a reference for other similar operations in the future."