New GE Hitachi technology aids nuclear power maintenance work
GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH), in coordination with Exelon Generation, today unveiled a new, innovative remotely-operated tool that has successfully enabled nuclear technicians to complete tasks at the bottom of nuclear reactors more quickly and safely.
This new tool remotely disconnects – uncouples – control rods (one of the pieces of equipment that allows operators to control power production) from their associated blades at the bottom of the reactor during preventative maintenance. Utilizing the battery-powered, wireless device minimizes the amount of radiation that workers are exposed to and allows parallel work activities to take place under the reactor pressure vessel during service outages. The tool has been shown to reduce radiation dose associated with uncoupling by as much as 60 percent.