No. 99 Yilan Rd., Xiamen , CN.
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Over 10 Thousand Rolled Cylinders for Nuclear Waste Storage

Material: 235B
Main Fabrication Processes: cutting, bevelling, plate rolling, welding, polishing, etc.

Recently, over 10 thousand rolled cylinders were successfully delivered on time.  Due to the short lead time, we switched the production into two shifts of 12 hours. We improved the feeding device and adjusted the operation steps, shortening the original 22 minutes per piece to 15 minutes per piece. The improvement not only guarantees the delivery on time, reduces the labor intensity of employees, but also improves work efficiency.

This bacth of rolled cylinders is used for nuclear waste storage projects.

palte rolling cylinders for Nuclear wastewater storage

rolled cylinder for Nuclear wastewater storage

What's Nuclear Waste?

ike all industries and energy-producing technologies, the use of nuclear energy results in some waste products. There are three types of nuclear waste, classified according to their radioactivity: low-, intermediate-, and high-level. The vast majority of the waste (90% of total volume) is composed of only lightly-contaminated items, such as tools and work clothing, and contains only 1% of the total radioactivity. By contrast, high-level waste – mostly comprising used nuclear (sometimes referred to as spent) fuel that has been designated as waste from the nuclear reactions – accounts for just 3% of the total volume of waste, but contains 95% of the total radioactivity.
Unlike any other energy generating industry, the nuclear sector takes full responsibility for all of its waste. Many permanent disposal facilities are in operation for low- and intermediate-level waste, and facilities for high-level waste and used nuclear fuel are under implementation and facilities under construction.

Why do we need to store nuclear waste?

Since the dawn of the civil nuclear power industry, nuclear waste has never caused harm to people. The popular misconception is that because certain parts of nuclear waste remain radioactive for billions of years, then the threat must be sustained for that period. However, this is not the case. Whilst remaining weakly radioactive for a few hundred thousand years, the radioactivity from the main component of the waste which could cause health problems will have decayed to safe levels within a few hundred years. A key factor in understanding why nuclear waste repositories do not pose a health threat also stems from the fact that the quantity of materials which would be found in the environment in the event of a leak would be very small. The amount of radioactive materials that would enter the environment would make no difference to the natural environment or future humans. After all, the environment we live in, as well as the human body, is naturally radioactive. Radiation is an unavoidable part of life on our planet, and life evolved and is thriving in this radioactive environment, and the doses from a nuclear waste repository would be almost 50 times smaller than the average background radiation.

How to store nuclear waste?

Used nuclear fuel is kept in either wet or dry storage facilities, before being recycled or disposed of. When used fuel is taken out of a reactor, it is both hot and radioactive and requires storage in water to allow the fuel to cool. The fuel can be kept in wet storage, or transferred into a dry facility after a period of initial cooling. Keeping the used fuel in temporary storage to allow both the heat and radioactivity to diminish makes recycling and disposal easier.

These are, however, not permanent storage solutions. Two main waste management strategies exist across the world: some countries have been recycling used nuclear fuel for decades; others have opted for direct disposal.

There is another way: direct disposal.
Direct disposal is, as the name suggests, a management strategy where used nuclear fuel is designated as waste and disposed of in an underground repository, without any recycling. The used fuel is placed in canisters which, in turn, are placed in tunnels and subsequently sealed with rocks and clay. The waste from recycling – the so-called fission products – will also be placed in the repository.

What Do We Do for Nuclear with Our Metal Fabrication and Machining Services?

Key steel fabrication services that we perform for nuclear companies, OEMs and equipment manufacturing firms include plate bending, mechanical engineering, manufacturing of wear-resistant components, ASME pressure vessel fabrication, heat exchanger construction, plate rolling, plate forming, metal forming, cold forming, hot forming, steel plate fabrication, welding, heat treating, plate cutting, and plate straightening. We have the capabilities, industry experience and specialized equipment needed to form, cut, machine, process and join most types of heavy steel, alloy steel or metal.

Openex processes a variety of materials for the nuclear power industry including stainless steel, carbon steel, carbon alloy, nickel alloy, aluminum, copper, brass, heat-resistant alloys, corrosion-resistant alloys, abrasion-resistant alloys, non-ferrous steel and chrome carbide overlay plates.

The steel fabrications, nuclear pressure vessels and tanks, containment parts, shell and tube heat exchangers, radioactive material containers, and components that we produce are used in nuclear facilities and nuclear applications throughout the world.

Contact us at [email protected] to get an estimate for custom steel fabrication services for your nuclear facility or equipment manufacturing.

About Openex

Openex is home to a full-service, one-stop-shop, contract manufacturing company producing custom large machined parts and fabrications. Our full large fabrication services including large machining, cutting, welding, rolling, punching, braking, testing, painting, and others.
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