How to clean the plate heat exchangers which, supplied by a source of cold water upstream from the power station (such as a river or the sea), cool the water in a nuclear power station's cooling system? How can obstructions (sediment, algae, shellfish etc.) be dealt with as quickly and effectively as possible? At ABMI, we responded to this challenge by completely redesigning the maintenance solution, moving from a mechanical method to an innovative chemical process.


Our solution: a chemical cleaning skid which considerably reduces maintenance times. To develop it, we analysed the obstructing products and power sources available close to the exchangers. We then designed the equipment using simple and robust materials. We designed every aspect of the solution in order to deliver turnkey equipment which is fully adapted to the needs of our client EDF.


We formed a team comprising a multidisciplinary engineer-project manager and two planner-draughtsmen in addition to coordinating our trusted partners (sheet metal workers, electricians, pipe fitters, etc.) to produce robust and ergonomic equipment. Once it was installed, our project manager trained users at EDF.


The chemical cleaning skid was successfully put into operation at EDF. Our client's teams soon adapted to using this innovative tool. It is now no longer necessary to dismantle the exchangers, cutting the cleaning time in half, from 8 hours to 4. A major improvement: it eliminates the risk of EDF having to shut down a reactor due to the exchangers being clogged. We have therefore improved both productivity and safety on a highly sensitive site.