Skip to main content

Founding a Foundry

mainlogo One thing we've mentioned here a few times is that a nuclear renaissance is going to require some oomph from the steel industry if the parts necessary to build a plant are going to be built in the United States. Well, here it comes, via the, ahem, French:

France's Areva SA said it is forming a joint venture with Northrop Grumman Corp. to build nuclear reactor vessels, steam generators and other pieces of heavy equipment at Northrop's shipyards at Newport News, Va., a sign that the planned construction of new nuclear reactors in the U.S. could help stimulate the country's manufacturing sector.

The $360 million investment in Areva Newport News LLC will result in construction of a 300,000 square-foot manufacturing and engineering facility that will support U.S. sales of Areva's nuclear reactor, called the "evolutionary power reactor," or EPR. Areva is seeking to get the reactor design certified ...

You have to pay good cash money to see the rest of the story on the Wall Street Journal site, but here's AREVA:

« AREVA Newport News s’inscrit dans le renouveau nucléaire américain », a déclaré Anne Lauvergeon, Présidente du Directoire d’AREVA. « AREVA s’est fixé comme ambition de construire un tiers du ...

Oops!

Let's try again:

“AREVA Newport News is powerful evidence of the reality of the U.S. nuclear energy resurgence and our commitment to it,” said AREVA CEO Anne Lauvergeon. “AREVA intends to build one-third of all new reactors around the world and at least seven in the United States."

AREVA already does this kind of work in France, but the Northrop Grumman connection helps create jobs in this country and leverages the latter's skills in fabbing big pieces - think shipbuilding, sub-genus nuclear ships and submarines - to get the effort up and running quickly.

This is very, very good news - a piece of the puzzle now fitted into place. Our jigsaw is green and getting greener.

La plume de ma tante est sur le table. Or something.

Comments

kb said…
Here's an old IT "workaround": searching for the WSJ story via Google News you get the complete version. Shhh!

Full version available here.

Popular posts from this blog

How Nanomaterials Can Make Nuclear Reactors Safer and More Efficient

The following is a guest post from Matt Wald, senior communications advisor at NEI. Follow Matt on Twitter at @MattLWald.

From the batteries in our cell phones to the clothes on our backs, "nanomaterials" that are designed molecule by molecule are working their way into our economy and our lives. Now there’s some promising work on new materials for nuclear reactors.

Reactors are a tough environment. The sub atomic particles that sustain the chain reaction, neutrons, are great for splitting additional uranium atoms, but not all of them hit a uranium atom; some of them end up in various metal components of the reactor. The metal is usually a crystalline structure, meaning it is as orderly as a ladder or a sheet of graph paper, but the neutrons rearrange the atoms, leaving some infinitesimal voids in the structure and some areas of extra density. The components literally grow, getting longer and thicker. The phenomenon is well understood and designers compensate for it with a …

Missing the Point about Pennsylvania’s Nuclear Plants

A group that includes oil and gas companies in Pennsylvania released a study on Monday that argues that twenty years ago, planners underestimated the value of nuclear plants in the electricity market. According to the group, that means the state should now let the plants close.

Huh?

The question confronting the state now isn’t what the companies that owned the reactors at the time of de-regulation got or didn’t get. It’s not a question of whether they were profitable in the '80s, '90s and '00s. It’s about now. Business works by looking at the present and making projections about the future.

Is losing the nuclear plants what’s best for the state going forward?

Pennsylvania needs clean air. It needs jobs. And it needs protection against over-reliance on a single fuel source.


What the reactors need is recognition of all the value they provide. The electricity market is depressed, and if electricity is treated as a simple commodity, with no regard for its benefit to clean air o…

Why Nuclear Plant Closures Are a Crisis for Small Town USA

Nuclear plants occupy an unusual spot in the towns where they operate: integral but so much in the background that they may seem almost invisible. But when they close, it can be like the earth shifting underfoot.

Lohud.com, the Gannett newspaper that covers the Lower Hudson Valley in New York, took a look around at the experience of towns where reactors have closed, because the Indian Point reactors in Buchanan are scheduled to be shut down under an agreement with Gov. Mario Cuomo.


From sea to shining sea, it was dismal. It wasn’t just the plant employees who were hurt. The losses of hundreds of jobs, tens of millions of dollars in payrolls and millions in property taxes depressed whole towns and surrounding areas. For example:

Vernon, Vermont, home to Vermont Yankee for more than 40 years, had to cut its municipal budget in half. The town closed its police department and let the county take over; the youth sports teams lost their volunteer coaches, and Vernon Elementary School lost th…