Vallourec has successfully completed production of 13,475 steam generator tubes for the Chinese manufacturer Senpec. The tubes are destined for three steam generators which make up unit 5 of the Tianwan nuclear power plant. Production of the first steam generator tubes for this project began at the Valinox Nucléaire plant (Montbard, Burgundy) in spring 2016.
This delivery is part of a much larger order contract to include the provisioning of a total of 26.950 tubes, i.e. 578 km, in order to equip all the steam generators (six total) of Tianwan units 5 and 6. A new production campaign will therefore begin next summer in Montbard for unit no. 6.
The Tianwan nuclear power plant is considered to be the largest nuclear site in China. It is located in the Chinese province of Jiangsu on the coast of the Yellow Sea, about 19 miles from the city of Lianyungang. Construction work began in early 2016 on this new unit, an ACPR-1000 pressurized water reactor.
The tubes provided by Valinox Nucléaire are made of a 1-mm thick nickel alloy that go through a cold-pilgering process. Following this, they undergo heat treatment and very strict quality control before being bent according to strict tolerances.
These tubes—the only interface between the primary system and the secondary system in pressurized water reactors—transfer heat from the reactor to the secondary system in order to produce the steam that drives a high power turbine generating electricity. These are critical components in a nuclear power plant. They contribute to the facility’s safety, and the reactor’s performance depends largely on their quality.
Valinox Nucléaire is the world’s first nuclear industry supplier to obtain NSQ-100 certification (mid-2015). The NSQ-100 standard is considered throughout the world to be the strictest in the field. It was created to meet recent challenges regarding quality and safety of products and processes related to nuclear environments around the world.
Since it was created in 1974, Valinox Nucléaire, which has one industrial site in France and one in China, has produced more than 45,000 km of tubes, the equivalent of the Earth’s circumference, and meets the highest and most demanding specifications to equip the main types of third generation pressurized water reactors. With over 40 years of experience, Valinox Nucléaire is the world leader in steam generator tubes. Located in Montbard (Burgundy) since 1974, Valinox Nucléaire modernized its production facility in 2011 and opened a new plant in Guangzhou (Canton), Southeast China, in June 2013 to accompany growth in the Chinese nuclear market and export market.
The Group meets all of its clients’ needs through a complete range of premium tubes, both in terms of dimensions and steel grades: seamless water and steam connection and transfer tubes for all of the nuclear power plant’s systems (primary, secondary and auxiliary.
Vallourec has a strong international presence, and its nuclear activities are located in France, China, South Korea, India and the United States. It is also involved in nuclear projects around the world. In total, 50% of the nuclear power plants currently in operation or under construction in the world are fitted with Vallourec tubes.