Areva says it has successfully decontaminated the major components of the Chooz A nuclear power plant in northern France.

In the first project of its kind Areva has carried out in France, the primary loop elements – four steam generators, the pressuriser and the primary loop lines – were decontaminated, in what the company says is “a major step forward in the ongoing decommissioning of the plant”.

Areva used its CORD UV and AMDA techniques to carry out the project, which involves the progressive introduction of chemical substances into the primary circuit which circulate over several days until the end of the process.

Through this operation, AREVA said it “significantly reduced the degree of the components’ radioactivity so that they could be classified as very low level waste”.

Following their decontamination, the components were transported to a National Radioactive Waste Management Agency facility to be stored.