EnergyIndustrial Additive ManufacturingNuclearSustainability

StrongHold AM, the first ever 3D printed nuclear fuel debris filter

It was created and installed in a nuclear power plant by Westinghouse

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Westinghouse installed its StrongHold AM 3D printed nuclear fuel debris filters in two Nordic Boiling Water Reactor (BWR) units – Olkiluoto 2 in Finland, and Oskarshamn 3 in Sweden – to further improve the plants’ operational reliability.

Westinghouse created the StrongHold AM filter in close cooperation with plant operators Teollisuuden Voima Oyj (TVO) and OKG. The StrongHold AM filters are fully manufactured through 3D printing techniques and offer enhanced capture features to prevent debris from entering the fuel assembly and potentially damaging the cladding, which could cause unplanned and expensive outages.“

StrongHold AM, the first ever 3D printed fuel debris filter for nuclear power plants was created and installed by Westinghouse

“We can now gain important practical experience in the use of 3Dprinted metal products which will become an ever more important operational solution going forward. It is important to have a strong network of partners like Westinghouse who deploy additive manufacturing to drive enhanced capability,” said Arttu Knuutila, TVO Fuel Procurement Team Leader.

“Fuel damages can force us to temporarily suspend operations, which affects security of supply and entails unnecessary costs,” said Andreas Roos, Oskarshamn 3 Plant Manager. “Reducing the risk of fuel damages is very positive for our business.”

“As the first 3D printed fuel debris filter for insertion in a nuclear power plant, the StrongHold AM marks a major milestone in our effort to further improve the BWR fuel reliability by leveraging advances in manufacturing technology,” said Dr. Carina Önneby, Westinghouse Vice President EMEA Fuel Delivery.

Westinghouse’s 130-year history of innovation began when founder George Westinghouse, commercialized the alternating current and forever changed the way electricity was distributed. This legacy continues in the nuclear era, which originated when Westinghouse built the world’s first commercial pressurized water reactor in Shippingport, Pa. More than 60 years later, 430 nuclear reactors operate around the world using Westinghouse technology.

As the world strives to address the challenges of a changing climate, the company is rethinking how it delivers nuclear energy. From the efficient AP1000 nuclear plant to the new eVinci micro reactor for remote energy applications, new nuclear technologies can help to access the benefits of this reliable, clean, safe and economical source of energy for generations to come.


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