The French nuclear power industry came together to contribute to the ambitious R&D project that developed the Cluster CONNEXION (Contrôle Commande Nucléaire Numérique pour l’Export et la rénovatION) programme. Its goal is to develop major innovations in the design and production of nuclear power plant instrumentation and control systems.
This programme is built on an industry-wide scale around the introduction of the Cluster CONNEXION, led and directed by EDF’s R&D division. Its purpose is to develop and validate an innovative architecture for instrumentation and control systems designed specifically to meet the needs of nuclear power plants in France and internationally.
What is the scope of this project?
Cluster CONNEXION encompasses all the resources required to provide automated and manual supervision, monitoring and control of the physical elements that make up a nuclear power plant:
- sensors and actuators required to action processes and feed data back to the control centre
- data gathering systems and automated response systems designed to protect and regulate the processes involved
- computers and operator interfaces required for operational control, supervision and support
- operational documentation
The three key anticipated outcomes
Cluster CONNEXION should provide:
- Basic principles for the design of an instrumentation and control architecture that is adaptable to the needs of different markets, accompanied by a suite of tools to facilitate the demonstration of plant safety for regulatory purposes in target market countries
- Modular environment for the design, validation and formal approval of inspection and control systems that combine joint instrumentation and control simulation techniques with operating and process overviews
- Opportunity to implement networks of wireless sensors specific to nuclear operations as the basis for accessing innovative monitoring and diagnostic services
in public-sector subsidies
postgraduate and post-doctorate students recruited
The benefits for the nuclear power industry
Cluster CONNEXION makes a valuable contribution to strengthening the French nuclear power industry ecosystem by:
- developing the innovation required to maintain the French nuclear power industry’s competitive edge
- boosting the credibility and scientific influence of industry stakeholders
- capitalising on knowledge in preparation for renewing the existing generations of power plants, while also maintaining the relevance and appeal of nuclear power
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