ASN considers that the steps taken by Framatome allow production to resume at the Creusot Forge plant
ASN informed Framatome and EDF that it considers that the steps taken at the Creusot Forge plant allow the production of components intended for French nuclear facilities to resume under certain conditions, more particularly, the surveillance of the activities.
In 2015 and 2016, major technical and organisational shortcomings that had occurred in the Creusot Forge plant in the past were brought to light. In April 2017, ASN informed Framatome (Areva NP at the time) and EDF of the preconditions it considered necessary for forging operations to resume.
In response to the ASN requests, Framatome identified the underlying causes of the failures observed in its plant and implemented an improvement plan concerning the organisation, skills, quality and safety culture prevailing within the plant. EDF has modified and reinforced its surveillance of this plant.
The Framatome improvement plan led to a certain number of concrete measures, including:
- safety culture assessments and training;
- reinforced metallurgy training;
- steps contributing to process control, such as research and development on measurement uncertainties;
- the identification of 12 key positions, which were filled in 2017;
- the restructuring of surveillance;
- the production of test pieces designed to ensure the plant’s ability to produce in compliance with all the requirements;
- investments of several million euros in 2017 and 2018.
In October 2017, Framatome informed ASN of its intention to resume forging of nuclear pressure equipment components for French nuclear facilities in its Creusot Forge plant.
ASN analysed the steps taken by EDF and Framatome and carried out several inspections in this plant. On the basis of its own inspections and the information transmitted by Areva NP and EDF, ASN considers that the results of the steps taken are satisfactory and offer sufficient guarantees of the quality and regulatory compliance of the future production by this plant.
When production resumes, forging of each type of component (shell, dome, pipe, etc.) shall undergo prior technical qualification examined by ASN, in order to verify the plant’s technical capability.
At this stage, ASN is maintaining reinforced surveillance of the Creusot Forge plant.
To find out more:
Consult the page containing the information published so far by ASN on the failures detected within Framatome’s Le Creusot plant.