AREVA to set up water decontamination process for Fukushima site

Source: AREVA

Following a request from Tepco, AREVA proposed a solution to treat most of the contaminated water from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant, which the Japanese power company has just accepted. The contaminated water must be treated rapidly as it is preventing Tepco from repairing the power plant’s power supply and cooling systems. 

For three weeks, AREVA has sent radioactive effluent treatment specialists to Japan to participate in work groups with Tepco. Backed by large teams in France, Germany and the United States, they proposed a method based on a co-precipitation concept. Developed by AREVA and used in the Marcoule and La Hague facilities, the process uses special chemical reagents to separate and recover the radioactive elements. AREVA will then draw on its expertise and solu-tions for treating and managing these elements. 

For comprehensive coverage of the Japanese nuclear power disaster and efforts under way to resolve it, visit PennEnergy’s Japan Earthquake and Nuclear Emergency 2011 special section. 

AREVA also called on the skills of Veolia Water. A large-capacity treatment plant equipped with the co-precipitation process will be delivered by AREVA. This installation will sharply reduce the radioactivity levels of the treated water, which could be reused in the power plant’s cooling systems. 

Other processes may be used in parallel with this solution, which is the most suited to the present emergency. It could be supplemented by other medium- and long-term actions. 

This operation is part of the follow-up to the visit to Japan of the President of the French Republic.

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