Framatome GmbH (FRA-G)
Description of the legal entity
Framatome GmbH bundles comprehensive engineering capacities, particularly at the Erlangen site. Therefore, Germany is an important platform for Framatome. Thanks to its expertise in maintenance and modernization of nuclear power plants, Framatome GmbH plays a significant role in providing safe and efficient operation of nuclear power plants in Germany and worldwide. The competencies also include electrical and safety instrumentation and control technology, as well as development and manufacturing of fuel assemblies. Furthermore, Framatome GmbH operates unique testing facilities and laboratories.
Framatome GmbH is a Framatome company being a major international player in the nuclear energy market recognized for its innovative solutions and value-added technologies for designing, building, maintaining, and advancing the global nuclear fleet. Framatome designs, manufactures, and installs components, fuel and instrumentation and control systems for nuclear power plants and offers a full range of reactor services. With 14,000 employees worldwide, Framatome's expertise helps its customers improve the safety and performance of their nuclear plants and achieve their economic and societal goals. Framatome is owned by EDF (75.5%), Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI – 19.5%) and Assystem (5%).
Leading expertise areas of Framatome GmbH to be deployed in FRACTESUS are design, execution and assessment of RPV irradiation surveillance programs including LTO licensing worldwide, irradiation embrittlement studies and experimental test programmes for RPV steels, and RPV integrity assessments performed for many decades, related materials and component integrity issues, high-level testing and measurement facilities, qualification and harmonisation of standards, and project management. Moreover, Framatome GmbH has a long tradition of active participation in European FP projects (e.g. PERFECT, PERFORM 60, LONGLIFE, SOTERIA), networks (e.g. SNETP, IGRDM) and national research projects (e.g. CARISMA, CARINA, TIMES, CAMERA) covering structural integrity issues of nuclear components.
Profile of staff members involved
- Mr Hein Hieronymus (male): Certified engineer (diploma degree) in Power Engineering with specialization in Nuclear Engineering.
Special knowledge in the areas of RPV ageing and irradiation behavior of reactor materials and in management of RPV irradiation surveillance programs for power and research reactors and related R&D projects.
Over 33 years’ experience in applications and research & development in nuclear safety with over 15 years’ experience of project management in national and international projects for RPV safety assessment.
Present position: Chief Advisor and Senior Expert for irradiation behavior of materials.
- Mr Florian Obermeier (male): a certified engineer for mechanical engineering and a Framatome advisor for numerical fracture mechanics. He has been working for more than 10 years as project engineer in fracture mechanics and structural integrity issues, in particular in fracture mechanics assessment and R&D for reactor pressure vessel and piping components. He accomplished a wide range of engineering work for nuclear power plants including leak-before-break and RPV safety analysis as well as finite element weld, residual stress and distortion calculations. He was involved in different international and national R&D projects like STYLE, NESC, ATLAS+, SOTERIA, CARINA and CAMERA where he designed also mechanical tests. He published several technical papers for ASME PVP, ECF and IAEA.
- Mrs Julia Kobiela (female): certified engineer (Diploma degree) in Material Science. Julia Kobiela is member of the section irradiation behaviour. She is project manager and has special knowledge as advisor in the field of irradiation and aging behaviour of ferritic reactor pressure vessels materials. She has 11 years’ experience in managing RPV irradiation surveillance programs for power reactors and in national and international related R&D projects for the RPV safety assessment.
- Mrs Anne Gumbert (female): certified engineer (Bachelor degree) in Material Engineering. Knowledge in the area of root-cause analysis, metallography and instrumented indentation testing (Nanoindentation). Experience in project management for customer orders and customer support. Present position: Engineer for root-cause analysis and metallography.
- Mrs. Vanessa Lind (female): certified engineer (Master degree) in Material and Nano Engineering. Knowledge in the areas of RPV ageing and irradiation behaviour of reactor materials and in the assessment of safety and lifetime evaluation of mechanical components due to fracture mechanic analyses. Moreover experience in project management for costumer orders and R&D projects for standard and routine tasks. Present position: Engineer for irradiation behavior of materials
Relevant publications, and/or products, services
- Obermeier F., Courtin S., Nicak T., Keim E., FE residual stress analysis in a narrow gap dissimilar metal weld” (2012), Proceedings of the ASME 2012 Pressure Vessels & Piping Conference PVP2012, 15-19 July 2012, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
- Hein H., Keim E., Schnabel H., Barthelmes J., Eiselt Ch., Obermeier F., Ganswind J., Widera M., “Final Results from the CARINA Project on Crack Initiation and Arrest of Irradiated German RPV Steels for Neutron Fluences in the Upper Bound” (2013), 26th ASTM Symposium on the Effects of Radiation on Nuclear Materials, Indianapolis,12-13 June 2013
- Obermeier F., Barthelmes J., Keim E., Hein H., Schnabel H., Kaiser M., PVP2013-97954, “Crack arrest test results of unirradiated and irradiated German RPV steels” (2013), Proceedings of the ASME 2013 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference PVP2013, 14-18 July 2013, Paris, France
- Hein H., Kobiela J., Brumovsky M., Houtilainen C., Lydman J., Marini B., Radiguet B., Startsev O., Serrano Garcia M., Hernandez Pascual R., Roeder F., Viehrig H.-W., “Addressing of specific uncertainties in determination of RPV fracture toughness in the SOTERIA project” (2018), FONTEVRAUD 9, 17-20 September 2018, Avignon, France
- Kobiela J., May J., Hein H., Keim E., “Description of the whole fracture toughness curve including upper shelf on the basis of empirical T0 correlation within the R&D project CAMERA” (2018), FONTEVRAUD 9, 17-20 September 2018, Avignon, France
Relevant previous projects or activities
- The research programme CARISMA (Crack Initiation and Arrest of Irradiated Steel Materials) was carried out by Framatome GmbH (former AREVA GmbH) between 2003 and 2008 in cooperation with VGB (German utilities, NPP Gösgen), the German Ministry of Economics and Technology, NPP Borssele (The Netherlands), and NPP Trillo (Spain) and has produced a large data base to characterise the fracture toughness behavior of RPV materials irradiated mainly in the test reactor VAK and in a commercial PWR.
- The research programme TIMES (Transferability of Irradiated Materials to Structures) was a national research project in cooperation with the VGB (German utilities). Framatome GmbH (former AREVA GmbH) was the main contractor of the project starting in 2004 and ending in 2008. In this project transferability issues of specimen properties being used in integrity assessments of components have been addressed.
- The CARINA (Extension of the Data Base of Fracture Mechanical Characteristics of Irradiated German RPV Materials) programme followed the CARISMA programme in 2008 and was finished in 2012. Framatome GmbH (former AREVA GmbH) was main contractor in an international cooperation with VGB (German utilities), the German Ministry of Economics and Technology, NPP Gösgen (Switzerland) and NPP Ringhals/VFAB (Sweden).
- Framatome GmbH (former AREVA GmbH) was a partner in LONGLIFE (Treatment of long-term irradiation embrittlement effects in RPV safety assessment) carried out in the EURATOM part of the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission. End user related issues regarding the irradiation-induced changes in material properties were studied by means of 16 preselected RPV materials, which are representative of Western and Russian LWRs in operation, and congeneric model alloys through material testing and microstructural analyses. The outcome of the project was an improved knowledge on LTO phenomena relevant for European LWRs, the assessment and proposed improvements of prediction tools, codes and standards, and the elaboration of best practice guidelines on RPV irradiation surveillance
- Framatome GmbH did participate in the Horizon 2020 EU Programme project SOTERIA (Safe long term operation of light water reactors based on improved understanding of radiation effects in nuclear structural materials) to improve the understanding of the ageing phenomena occurring in reactor pressure vessel (RPV) steels and in the internal steels (internals) in order to provide crucial information to regulators and operators to ensure safe long-term operation (LTO) of existing European nuclear power plants (NPPs). Specific tasks in SOTERIA, that was finished in 2019, comprised also the manufacturing and testing of miniature C(T) specimens that is addressed in FRACTESUS as well.
Significant infrastructure and/or any major items of technical equipment
Framatome GmbH operates state-of-the-art facilities with highly skilled and experienced staff enabling manufacturing and testing activities on site in certified and accredited laboratories including all kinds of mechanical material testing, microstructural techniques (SEM, TEM, and others), hot cells and radiochemistry. Specific knowledge on manufacture, reconstitution and testing of fracture toughness specimens can be used for the project. Moreover, qualified resources are available for structural integrity analysis by numerical Finite Element Method (FEM), crack growth calculations for lifetime evaluation, and application of advanced calculation and simulation systems in the field of brittle and ductile fracture.