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CANDU PHWR Steam Generator Tube Prima® Inspection and Repair

CANDU PHWR Steam Generator Tube Prima® Inspection and Repair

To reduce the duration of steam generator inspection and maintenance activities, BWXT Canada has developed the PRIMATM SG robotic manipulator. This manipulator provides improved speed, accuracy and durability to provide significant savings in time and operator dose during inspection campaigns.

The PRIMA™ SG manipulator was designed, assembled and tested in-house by BWXT Canada in co-operation with our Intech subsidiary. This includes the mechanical components, electrical and camera systems, and the control software. The system is designed for rapid tool head changes and can accommodate all automated tube plugging and tube removal tooling.

PRIMA™ SG has been successfully deployed on steam generator inspection campaigns in Canada and overseas.

The PRIMA™ SG system was designed with employee safety in mind; no personnel are required to enter the vessel during the inspection. The system provides single-location calibration and a low-profile eddy current probe delivery system. It was also crucial that the system be designed around the ALARA (As Low As Reason¬ably Achievable) principle, minimizing the exposure to radiation for personnel performing the installation and equipment functions in the work area. To exceed ALARA requirements the system was designed to be extremely durable, portable and efficiently set up in containment.


Key Features & BenefitsPrima Inspection Tool

In response to the need for efficient, reliable and safe steam generator inspection, BWXT Canada developed the PRIMATM SG system, a state-of-the-art service robot with a specialized manipulator arm.

  • Proven field installation time of 10 minutes
  • 3 piece lightweight design for ease of transportation and practical bowl assembly
  • Designed for FME safety
  • Extremely strong and rigid with a maximum payload of 100 lbs
  • Remote Single point calibration
  • Failsafe retention of calibration during power losses
  • Tube to Tube speed is negligible (4 ft/second)
  • Interfaces with all common industry Remote Data Acquisition Units
  • Support suite of tube plugging, ECT and tube maintenance end effecters
  • No pneumatic air requirements
  • No striding or tube walking required
  • No metal to metal gripping of tubes
  • Zero inspection exclusion zones