Vacuum Vessel: first parts manufactured by ENSA completed

ENSA (Equipos Nucleares S.A), as part of the AMW consortium, has achieved a key F4E milestone: the machining of two inner shell plates – the first pieces to be manufactured at ENSA – has been completed. These plates will make up the longest of the segments of the ITER Vacuum Vessel’s sector 3, and measure each 6 metres long, 1.5 metres wide, and has a thickness of 60 millimetres. The plates are made up of the special ITER grade stainless steel. The long length of each plate has entailed a number of challenging steps involving cleaning; cutting and machining of holes which will house the so-called flexible housings (large cylindrical parts which act as bolts); as well as carrying out a wide variety of inspection techniques in order to detect the presence of defects, characterise findings, and measure without causing any damage to the plates themselves (known as Non-destructive Examination – NDE). What makes this work additionally challenging is the fact that the flatness tolerance (the permissible limit or limits of variation in the overall flatness of each plate) is very tight – only a 0.4 mm variatio

n in 6 metres is permitted. With the right techniques, the necessary flatness tolerance for the plates has been achieved, even despite that the longer the length of the piece, the more difficult it is to attain the same overall flatness.

“This milestone achievement shows the commitment of ENSA as part of the AMW consortium to the delivering Europe’s Vacuum Vessel contribution and its key role in the success of the Vacuum Vessel manufacturing”, says Rafael Treviño, Director General of ENSA.

“F4E is pleased with ENSA’s performance: they keep their commitment whilst anticipating and mitigating issues. ENSA has lived up […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    The ITER Organization chooses Ensa to share the progress of the project

The ITER Organization chooses Ensa to share the progress of the project

Representatives of several companies involved in the manufacturing of the components that will constitute the Vacuum Vessel of the ITER Project have met these days at the facilities of Ensa to share the last advances in the experimental fusion reactor.

During the meeting various presentations of the general status of each project have been done and the cantabrian company carried out a presentation of their advances since 2012 and showed the results and conclusions obtained with each mock-up performed, as it has done welding work in various structures and mockups to look for the best parameters and configurations for the welds that will be carried out in Cadarache.

For Ensa, company in charge of welding the segments and ports that are being manufactured for the Vacuum Vessel of ITER, this encounter has resulted “truly fruitful”, since it has allowed them to know other points of view that help to deepen the development of different systems to be able to assemble the components manufactured by the companies attending the meeting.

  • Permalink Gallery

    Ensa’s Advanced Technological Center will carry out the tests of the robot within the COROMA European program

Ensa’s Advanced Technological Center will carry out the tests of the robot within the COROMA European program

COROMA European project (Cognitively Enhaced Robot for Flexible Manufacturing of Metal and Composite Parts) seeks to develop a new concept of intelligent, modular and flexible industrial robots, capable of executing multiple processes and manufacturing metallic and composite parts for demanding sectors as aeronautics, shipbuilding or power generation. The Advanced Technological Center (CTA) of Ensa will carry out the tests of the robot for this latter case.

The initiative, which started in late 2016 and will conclude in October 2019, has the participation of a total of 16 companies, research centers and universities from seven different countries.

COROMA has a budget of more than 7 million euros, 6 of them have been funded by the European Commission through the program to boost research and innovation Factories of the Future, within the frame of the multi annual program Horizon 2020.

The technical team will work to ensure that the design of the human-robot interface will fast programming. The modularity of the COROMA robotic system will allow it to adapt to the specific requirements of different manufacturing companies.

This Project has received funding from the European Union Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No. 723853.

The European Commission approves Ensa its MEACTOS project

The European Commission approves Ensa its MEACTOS project (Mitigating Environmental Assisted Cracking Through Optimisation of Surface Condition).

This project, which lasts four years, aims to improve the reduction of residual stresses and the stress effect of cracking corrosion in steels from the perspective of microtensions and surface cracks induced by machining and treatments that can be given superficially to the pieces to alleviate them or to avoid their appearance.

In addition to the general objectives of the project, Ensa expects to obtain information on the possible replacement of cutting fluids and oils by refrigeration with cryogenic technology (CO2), and to acquire the necessary qualifications to carry out processes that have to do with this surface induction tension effect in machining.

In its “passion for improvement”, for Ensa it´s important work with the most advanced technologies, such as cryogenics or CO2 cooling and introduce the latest technological advances in its manufacturing processes.

Led by CIEMAT (Energetic, Environmental and Technological Research Center) and within the framework of Research and Innovation Program of the European Union Horizon 2020 the Cantabrian Company has participated with AREVA, EDF and Nuclear AMRC.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 755151.

Ensa shipped its first cask ENUN 24P to China

Equipos Nucleares S.A., S.M.E. (Ensa) shipped its first cask ENUN 24P to China that arrived to Shanghai in the middle of May and to Daya Bay plant at the end of the same month.

This is the first component for the Chinese market whose design, manufacture and supply has been realized completely by the cantabrian company. 15 years ago, Ensa made its first incursion but it was with the manufacture of two casks of other design.

The client, URC (Uranium Resources Company), requested Equipos Nucleares a cask for the transportation of the spent fuel of two plants, Daya Bay and LingAo, located in the south-east of China, to other pools of intermediate storage located in Lanzhou zone.

The ENUN 24P is a double purpose cask, designed for both, spent fuel transport and storage, it is able to transport 24 non damage fuel elements type PWR.

To adapt the existing requirements on the transportation route through China, Ensa has had to optimize the design of the standard trunnion of its casks, to satisfice the requirements of the Chinese Regulatory Council.

Otherwise, Ensa have realized the design and development of the charge auxiliary equipments, very technically advanced, to manipulate the cask with all the guarantees and facilities.

In China, the cold tests will be carried out and local personnel will be trained, who were previously trained in January and February 2016 by the cantabrian company.

Ensa explores new lines of collaboration in R + D + i

Ensa, the University of Cantabria and the Technology Center of Components held their seventh annual meeting to explore new collaborations in the field of research, innovation and development.

More than forty researchers and professionals highlighted the potential fields of collaboration, ranging from joint participation in research programs, several capacities in engineering, productivity, testing, etc.

During the meeting, assistants emphasized the importance of channeling the innovation needs of companies, including small and medium enterprises, as well as the need for close forums where establish personal links.

Ensa’s president and CEO, Eduardo González-Mesones, pointed out that “In this type of forum, new projects always come up, which helps us to keep evolving.”

Ensa launches a new application of the ENUN32P cask

Ensa received the approval of the Energy State Secretary for its cask ENUN32P destined to the transport of combustible elements with degree of burning of up to 45,000 MWd / MtU.

The design of this dual-purpose cask allows the storage and transportation of up to 32 spent fuel elements (PWR), as well as components associated with the core.

This cask increases the portfolio of Ensa in this line of fuel management and its capabilities to attend the market needs.

  • Permalink Gallery

    Ensa passed successfully the final inspection of the mock up scale sectors of the Vacuum Vessel of ITER

Ensa passed successfully the final inspection of the mock up scale sectors of the Vacuum Vessel of ITER

The result was satisfactory, achieving the contractual milestone. The client congratulated Ensa “for the good work made” and “for the great quality of the model”.

The structure is composed by 6 independent assemblies which, once assembled, will represent the 2-section joint of the ITER Vacuum Vessel.

The model is a part of a wide range of equipment and structures whose objective is the qualification of equipment developed for the installation of the Vacuum Vessel to be carried out in Cadarache (France).

  • Permalink Gallery

    Ensa completed the installation of the Aeroball Measurement System Shielding (AMS)

Ensa completed the installation of the Aeroball Measurement System Shielding (AMS)

Ensa completed the installation of the AMS that “is a great achievement to allow its implementation.”

The AMS allows a safe control of the fuel elements during the operation and Ensa has been responsible for making the shield to contain and prevent any neutron radiation or gamma rays coming from the reactor pressure vessel, so that, if it were necessary, personnel could access the AMS room during the operation of the plant.

The shielding of the AMS consists of a protected stainless steel structure which, due to its final position and very tight tolerances, involved special attention during manufacture, factory acceptance tests and installation phases.

  • Permalink Gallery

    Ensa loaded successfully the last two DPT casks at Trillo Nuclear Power Plant

Ensa loaded successfully the last two DPT casks at Trillo Nuclear Power Plant

Ensa completed successfully the loading of the last two DPT casks for the storage and transportation of spent fuel manufactured for Trillo Nuclear Power Plant in Guadalajara.

With the delivery of these two units, numbers 31 and 32, Ensa completes a series that began in year 2001. The DPT model was the first cask designed entirely by the Spanish company that nowadays focuses its future on the new ENUN series of the universal cask model.