Archive for the ‘Environment’ Category

July 9, 2014 | 6:46 pm

Abbey Donahue’s Blog Post at NEI

Abbey DonahueGo check out AREVA engineer Abbey Donahue’s post at NEI’s Nuclear Notes blog.

Abbey is a Design Project Engineer for AREVA TN, and the professional development chair of the North American Young Generation in Nuclear (NA-YGN). In her post, Abbey talks about what she does, why it matters, and why she has such a passion for engineering, energy, and making a positive impact on the world.

Learn more about AREVA in North America and our broad portfolio of advanced energy technology—designed every day by innovative engineers like Abbey.

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July 3, 2014 | 3:46 pm

VIDEO: AREVA Forging the Nuclear Energy Future

Featuring state-of-the-art equipment, AREVA’s Creusot Forge is one of only a few forges in the world capable of creating the immense, precise parts necessary for a nuclear reactor’s heavy components.

Continuing the region’s 230-year smelting heritage, AREVA’s modern facility in Le Creusot specializes in large carbon or stainless steel forgings and castings, and recently added a 9,000-ton hydraulic press to its workshop. This latest addition joins a massive 11,000 ton hydraulic press, some of the world’s most powerful furnaces, and a range of tooling equipment for high-precision finish machining.

Thanks to these powerful industrial assets, AREVA is one of the few global suppliers capable of producing forgings for a range of vital nuclear reactor components:

  • Steam generator (upper, conical, and lower heads, elliptical dome, tube sheet)
  • Reactor pressure vessels
  • Pressurizer heads
  • Primary pump castings
  • Primary piping (hot and cold legs) connecting reactor and steam generators

Watch the video demonstrating and describing AREVA’s new 9,000-ton press.

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June 10, 2014 | 10:52 am

Young Generation Leading Nuclear Industry into the Future

NAYGN LogoBy Lauren Jones, Chair, AREVA Charlotte Chapter, NAYGN

More than 400 nuclear industry young professionals came together in Scottsdale, Ariz., from May 19-21 for the annual North American Young Generation in Nuclear (NAYGN) Professional Development Conference. Among these more than 400 individuals representing utilities, suppliers, and government agencies were 23 of AREVA Inc.’s finest young professionals from six different U.S. locations.

The level of ambition shown by the conference participants was astounding. These professionals under the age of 35 are passionate about supporting the growth of the nuclear industry worldwide, and hungry for opportunities that allow them to develop their leadership skills and relationships. These individuals may become the managers, chief nuclear officers, and chief executive officers of energy industry companies in the near future. That’s forward-looking energy.

Conference attendees developed their leadership skills and networked with colleagues from around the North America region during a variety of sessions, including a hearty welcome to the Grand Canyon State from Arizona Public Services Executive VP & Chief Nuclear Officer Randy Edington; a keynote address from Dr. Roberta Ness, author of “Innovation Generation;” breakout sessions designed to enhance soft skills such as communication, innovative outreach, and setting career goals; breakout sessions to provide updates on hot industry topics (small modular reactors, long-term operation, change management); and open sessions designed to foster innovation and brainstorming among diverse groups.

AREVA leaders Tom Franch, senior vice president of Reactors & Services North America, and Scott Baumgartner, director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship, served as panelists in two breakout sessions. In addition, four ideas from the open sessions were pitched to industry executives during an Innovation Competition, in which AREVA TN’s Matthew Bowen was a finalist for his STEM education ideas.

Some key conference takeaways from AREVA NAYGN attendees:

  • Sam Moore, Chair, AREVA TN Chapter: “It was inspiring to see young, ambitious professionals from across an entire industry coming together to shape the country’s energy future. Everyone in attendance was eager to form relationships, to work together, to learn from each other, and to stay in touch as they went back to their respective companies.”
  • Duriem Calderin, Co-Chair, AREVA Richland Chapter: “I got a lot of motivation to keep pushing forward and try to solve complex challenges by approaching them with ‘out of the box thinking’.”
  • Ryan Nash, Professional Development Chair, AREVA Charlotte Chapter: “The energy given off from this conference was that of youthfulness and excitement to meet new people, see old friends, and to try new things. The biggest takeaway about the main theme, Innovation, was the power of this generation to come up with some wild, crazy, out-of-the-box ideas that will help the industry perform safer, communicate clearer, and operate longer.”
  • Matt Cagnetta, Communications Chair, AREVA Charlotte Chapter: “The opportunity to meet face-to-face with our counterparts in the industry, to discuss industry-wide issues and promote nuclear energy was invaluable. The degree of attendance at the event should bolster the confidence of executives and individual contributors alike in the determination of the nuclear industry to provide clean, inexpensive, reliable energy for the long term.”

    At the end of the conference, AREVA NAYGN members Adam Howell (Charlotte) and Abbey Donahue (AREVA TN) were honored as Excellence Award winners for work done on behalf of NAYGN in 2014. Abbey also began her two-year term as professional development chair for the NAYGN Core leadership team.

    I returned from the conference with a renewed passion for the industry I’ve worked in for nearly nine years. Though the market has changed significantly over the past few years, the cleanest, most reliable form of base load power generation – nuclear energy – remains an important piece of the energy puzzle in North America.

    The future of the nuclear industry is in the hands of more than ten thousand young professionals, who are dedicated to using innovation and best practices to ensure the continued safe operation of the North America nuclear power fleet. Thirty percent of AREVA’s North American workforce is eligible to retire today – but that doesn’t mean a pending leadership gap. NAYGN members are taking advantage of opportunities, such as the NAYGN Professional Development Conference, to ensure they are ready to lead the industry into the future.

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May 30, 2014 | 4:48 pm

Carolinas Energy Hub Ripe for Growth

Kathy WilliamsBy Kathy Williams, Senior Vice President & Chief Financial Officer, AREVA Inc.

A few weeks ago, more than 500 energy industry leaders came together at the annual Charlotte Business Journal Energy Inc. Summit in Charlotte, N.C., where AREVA served as a presenting sponsor. I was honored to have the opportunity to participate as a speaker to share my perspective on the Carolinas Energy Hub and the energy challenges and opportunities ahead of us.

As I looked around the room before the program began, I recognized that my personal and professional journeys are very connected to the Carolinas Energy hub. I was born and raised in South Carolina, and my family members worked for SCANA and Sunbelt Rentals. Several years ago, I worked for Duke Energy. And now I work for one of North America’s leading providers of utility-scale nuclear and renewable energy products and services—AREVA Inc., headquartered in Charlotte.

Throughout the Energy Inc. Summit, it was clear that Energy Hub companies such as AREVA, Duke Energy, Westinghouse, CB&I, URS, SCANA, Sunbelt Rentals, EPRI, and others are spurring regional economic growth through the generation of safe, affordable, and reliable energy in the Carolinas and beyond.

What each of our organizations do within the Energy Hub can drive global impact, and the future of the energy industry is being shaped right here in the Carolinas. For example, the two new nuclear reactors under construction at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Power Station near Jenkinsville, S.C., reflect America’s continued commitment to sustaining the world’s largest nuclear energy fleet. EPRI’s global expertise and leadership facilitates innovative research and better technology to benefit all participants in the energy industry. Because of AREVA employees’ proven commitment to safety, innovation, and operational excellence, our customers can rely on our products and services to advance the quality and performance of their nuclear power facilities around the world.

AREVA and other Energy Hub members are also investing in the future energy industry by supporting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education in the Carolinas and throughout the United States. By 2018, the U.S. industry will have more than 1 million job openings in STEM-related fields. Yet, we are not graduating nearly enough STEM majors to meet this demand. Thirty percent of AREVA’s American workforce is eligible to retire in the next few years, which means that we must hire 175-300 early career professionals—primarily with STEM and technical backgrounds. To that end, AREVA and our Energy Hub partners continue supporting STEM initiatives, such as STEMersion, EPIC at UNC Charlotte, Project Lift, and many more.

Thanks to this innovation and collaboration in the Carolinas, growth continues and more opportunities are coming. Energy Hub partners share a commitment to further economic growth, employment, productivity and prosperity. For our part, AREVA will continue developing innovative ideas for generating clean, safe, and reliable electricity to power prosperity in the Carolinas and beyond. That’s forward-looking energy.

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March 17, 2014 | 4:34 pm

Earth Day 2014: #Atoms4Earth Contest

Guest post by Suzy Baker, Nuclear Literacy Project

Clean Air Saves LivesTo celebrate Earth Day, the Nuclear Literacy Project is excited to introduce a nuclear themed meme-making competition. We are inviting individuals, groups, clubs, organizations and corporations to create and submit homemade Internet memes inspired by the intersections of nuclear energy, the environment and social justice.

We will collect all of the memes shared under the hashtag #Atoms4Earth. The memes will be judged based on the quality of the image and message, as well as viral reach on the web. Each week a different guest judge will choose their favorite meme and the winner will be announced on the Nuclear Literacy Project blog ( The winners will each receive a prize courtesy of AREVA (thanks AREVA, y’all are awesome!). Prizes will be super cool atomic inspired artwork or wearables. The grand prizewinner will be announced on Earth Day (4/22/2014).

We urge participants to create inspiring, humorous and educational memes. Environmentally and human focused imagery and messaging are also appropriate for the Earth Day meme theme. When the memes are placed online, they should be linked to the science that supports the message and the creators should be acknowledged- along with the hash tag #Atoms4Earth, so we can easily find your work!

More on Internet Memes

“What exactly is an Internet meme?” you may be wondering …

An Internet meme is a simple image paired with a simple message, designed for travel on the web. A single meme can quickly reach thousands upon thousands of individuals through social media. Memes are also often linked to an article or study that supports their message.

Please only use open source imagery or imagery that you have permission to use. There are hosts of tools for free online. You can use one of our images to get started.

SO! In short, here’s what to do:

1)     Find a great image. Create a cool message. Make your meme!

2)     Tweet it to us under the hashtag #Atoms4Earth, or post to our Facebook page, along with your name and affiliation, if you are representing a group or company.

3)     Share your meme with all of your friends on social media & we will too!

4)     Wait for the following Tuesday to find out if you’ve won the weekly prize! Winners will be announced on Twitter and Facebook.

5)     Check back in on Earth Day to see if you’ve won the grand prize

Good Luck and Happy (almost) Earth Day!!

March 14, 2014 | 10:08 am

NGNP Alliance and NC2I Discuss Commercialization of AREVA’s Gen-IV HTGR

AREVA HTGR Information KitThe output of next-generation nuclear reactors can do much more than just generate electricity. In partnership with the U.S.-based NGNP Alliance, the international organization NC2I is considering an AREVA-designed Gen-IV prismatic core, modular high-temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) concept as a powerful, low-emissions energy source for industrial steam processes.

The European Union has a commitment to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and a major element of that commitment is the Sustainable Nuclear Energy Technology Platform (SNETP) program considering three nuclear energy applications, including the “Nuclear Cogeneration Industrial Initiative.”  This initiative explores GHG reductions in areas other than electricity generation, such as industrial process heat, district heating, and desalination.

The NC2I selected the HTGR as its preferred approach because of the concept reactor’s high temperature process heat capability and its intrinsic safe operating processes, allowing collocation with industrial facilities.

As stated in the news release announcing the selection,

“[They] met last week to discuss collaboration opportunities to development and commercialize a Generation IV, intrinsically safe nuclear high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) technology that can be used for cogeneration of process heat and electricity, displacing other fossil fuels and the greenhouse gases they cause.”

By sharing technical progress through this collaboration, we may be able to reach these industrial and environmental goals more economically.

Along with other leading global companies, AREVA is an active member of the NGNP Alliance and NC2I.

Read the NGNP Alliance release: International Industry Organizations Meet to Collaborate on Intrinsically Safe Nuclear Reactor Technology

February 28, 2014 | 5:48 pm

AREVA Richland Employees Contribute 100+ Hours To STEM Ed

by Duriem Calderin, Engineer, AREVA Inc.

North America Young Generation Nuclear employees in Richland participated as judges in Delta High School’s Science Fair held Feb. 19. Pictured are Steve Evans, John Fleming, Alex Bowman and Duriem Calderin.

North America Young Generation Nuclear employees in Richland participated as judges in Delta High School’s Science Fair held Feb. 19. Pictured are Steve Evans, John Fleming, Alex Bowman and Duriem Calderin.

Over the past year AREVA employees and local NA-YGN AREVA Chapter at the Richland, WA, site have been actively supporting the STEM education program (science, technology, Engineering, Math) at DELTA High School. This school is highly recognized in the Tri-Cities by its commitment to developing students and engaging them in STEM careers from an early age.

AREVA employees have partnered with DELTA High School in Richland to offer mentorship and to participate as judges in school-wide engineering and science fair projects. It is estimated by the end of 2014, AREVA employees will have contributed a total of 260 volunteer hours to the STEM educational programs.

The main contributors in organizing these events at the AREVA site in Richland are Jim Tolar and Scott Adair, NA-YGN outreach community chair.

Tolar said that this program is very important to AREVA because, “It is [also] a way to get the community to recognize that AREVA is here in the community and is part of the community for the long run.”

DELTA high school principal, Jenny Rodriquez, has thanked AREVA employees for their ongoing commitment to STEM education. She especially thanked the group of young professional engineers coming from NAYGN to participate at these events.

“Interactions with the NAYGN group have increased visibility of young professionals, especially engineers, allowing our students to see themselves entering STEM fields in the near future,” she said.

Rodriquez also said that AREVA’s commitment to giving back to the community will have short and long-term benefits for the company. “The benefits to AREVA for participation in this partnership are both short-term, such as the excitement generated in staff by sharing their profession with young people,” she said, “and long-term, such as the connection to qualified interns and future employees.”

Read more STEM blog posts.


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February 25, 2014 | 10:34 am

Diversity in Innovation Creates Opportunity

By Mike Rencheck, CEO, AREVA Inc. North America

Mike Rencheck, CEO, AREVA Inc. North AmericaAmerica has observed and celebrated African-American culture and heritage throughout the month of February since 1976. The origins date back to a week-long celebration in 1926 that encompassed the birthdays of both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglas, The celebration reminds us of the importance of continuing to learn from our history, honoring the contribution of those who have guided our country toward greater equality and opportunity. We draw inspiration from their creativity, innovation, and pursuit of better ways of doing and being.

It’s with this spirit that we recognize the contribution of diversity in National Engineer’s Week.

Celebrated the third week in February, it was founded by the National Society of Professional Engineers in 1951 to raise awareness of the contribution of engineers and the opportunities available via engineering career paths. At the intersection of African-American history month and National Engineer’s Week is the opportunity for businesses to recognize and engage the talents and perspectives of diverse communities in building a competitive workforce.

At AREVA, of our current entry level engineers, 41% of our employees are women or minorities, and we’re continuing to build on this solid foundation. From engaging with Historically Black Colleges and Universities like Morgan State University, to partnering with on-campus engineering societies including the National Society of Black Engineers, the Society of Women Engineers, and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers in our recruiting efforts, we are aligning our talent management strategies with our sustainable and diverse workforce objectives.

As a forward-looking energy company, our recognition that by 2016, 39% of the nuclear energy workforce will be eligible for retirement has long fueled outreach to grade schools and colleges to spark interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) career paths. On the local level, last week, AREVA employees at sites across the U.S. celebrated National Engineer’s Week through community and classroom outreach, with an emphasis on bringing greater awareness of engineering and STEM career pathways to schools like Druid Hills Academy near our headquarters in Charlotte, NC, and “The Governor’s STEM Academy” near our “Operational Center of Excellence” for products and services in Lynchburg, VA.

As an Ambassador for the Department of Energy’s Minorities in Energy initiative, I believe it is our responsibility to invest in younger generations, creating opportunity and supporting diversity as a driver of innovation and prosperity for the future, critical to both our companies and communities.

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February 24, 2014 | 1:44 pm

Engineers Week and AREVA at JFHS

Guest post by Ken Cooper, Physics / Earth Science teacher
Jefferson Forest H.S., Bedford County Public Schools

eWeek-JFHSOn Tuesday, February 18, Mr. Creasy and Ms. Weinmeister from AREVA visited my 2nd period Physics class as part of promoting Engineers Week. They briefly shared with the class areas of engineering at AREVA, and how students can get become involved in engineering. Mr. Creasy told them about a couple of different paths they could follow; of course, focusing on how AREVA can help the students, hoping they would become future employees. He stressed the need for the young people to get involved with engineering, because there’s an increasing need in this area due to technological advancements, retirees, and other reasons.

He also shared how AREVA can offer them tuition help, internships, and job experience, all while attending college. I think some of them will be considering looking into this in the future.

The students seemed to enjoy the speakers (and not just because it wasn’t me teaching). Some of the students asked about how their own interests are connected to AREVA.  Others asked about some specifics about AREVA’s nuclear and renewable energy businesses, or connections about AREVA to other companies, privacy issues, or other concerns. There were a lot of good questions. Both speakers answered the students’ questions well, sometimes using video presentations or pictures to do the talking for them, which is what prompted some of the other questions.

The presentation concluded with a team-building exercise I’ve seen and done myself that the students liked. It was pretty cool watching them use Physics and teamwork to design and build something out of spaghetti and marshmallows.

I hope to have AREVA and others over to speak to my Earth Science class, or as I teach math classes in the future.

Thanks, AREVA!

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January 21, 2014 | 4:49 pm

AREVA TN Employees Give the Gift of STEM & Safety

Hammond High School technical class students learn about nuclear energy and the U.S. industry’s strong safety culture.

Hammond High School technical class students learn about nuclear energy and the U.S. industry’s strong safety culture.

In December 2013, AREVA TN employees Ashley Spry and Jibu Abraham visited two technical classes at Hammond High School in Columbia, Md., to talk about classroom and industrial safety. During the discussion, they provided an overview of nuclear energy and showed students how power plants work using a boiling water reactor puzzle depicting its major components.

“The students were very engaged and eager to participate,” said Ashley. “I was so impressed with one student who was able to explain nuclear power back to the class after such a brief introduction to the topic. He explained it flawlessly, from the fuel pellets, to fission, all the way to the turbine, generator, and transmission lines.”

They also gave a presentation on AREVA’s commitment to safety, and presented the class with a new table saw, along with safety tips for operating the table saw and information on its modern safe-stop technology.

What led Ashley and Jibu to offer this safety presentation and new saw to the class? Another AREVA TN employee, Mark Woynicz, had mentioned Hammond High during a company community outreach meeting, and noted that the technical class was using a table saw not equipped with the latest safety features. Jibu recognized this need as a great opportunity for AREVA TN to sponsor a program focused on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, and to act on AREVA’s commitment to safety as an example to the students.

“Most of our outreach is intended to spark students’ interest in STEM-related careers. In this case, the students already have the interest, so we wanted to give them something more,” said Ashley. “In the nuclear industry, safety is always first and foremost, and we think it’s important to share our safety culture whenever we are engaged in community outreach.”

It’s “safe” to say they did just that! Omar Q., a student at Hammond, wrote Ashley and Jibu the following letter:

Dear Mr. Abraham and Ms. Spry,

Thank you for your presentation at Hammond! It was very interesting and informative, and has opened many new ideas for me in the field of engineering. Nuclear engineering is a very complex field, but it was explained so that all of us could understand it. In my own opinion, I think that nuclear energy is extremely interesting and promising, and that it could change the way power is produced. I appreciate the time you spent on your presentation at our school, and I’m certain that through the presentation, you have demonstrated the endless possibilities that engineering can provide. I also want to express my gratitude for providing a new table saw that I’m sure will make woodworking safer for all engineering students!


Omar Q.

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