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Cyclife UK to Support Decommissioning Strategy Development for Legacy Dounreay Fuel Reprocessing Facility

Publish on 06/09/2021

Cyclife UK is to support the GBP4.2 million optioneering and decommissioning plan development for the Fast Reactor Fuel Reprocessing Plant (FRFRP), inclusive of the Residue Recovery Plant and Evaporator Facility, at the Dounreay site.

As a strategic partner within the Jacobs-led Decommissioning and Waste Alliance consortium, Cyclife will develop and integrate the underpinning waste management and characterisation plans as the project progresses through Optioneering, Concept and Scheme Design phases. Cyclife will also provide risk management services. 

Located within Dounreay’s Fuel Cycle Area, the FRFRP was constructed in 1957 for the purpose of reprocessing fuel from the Dounreay Fast Reactor and latterly the Prototype Fast Reactor. The various active cells within the complex present notable challenges for consideration when determining the appropriate waste-led approaches to decommissioning.

David Howorth, Chief Sales Officer of Cyclife UK, said: “We are pleased to be part of the winning consortium for this key Dounreay opportunity, which further evidences the growing capability that Cyclife UK has within the decommissioning sector, alongside our well-established waste management expertise.”
Since its acquisition in 2016, Cyclife UK has developed innovative, cost-effective solutions for waste management and decommissioning. Leading the growing need to reduce volume, recycle waste and preserve disposal capacity and, using the wider EDF Group skills and assets, Cyclife UK can offer efficient decommissioning and waste management solutions that follow a waste-led decommissioning approach.

Photo credit: Dounreay

Guénola Guillon appointed Managing Director of Cyclife France

Publish on 19/05/2021

Guénola Guillon has been appointed Managing Director of Cyclife France, a 100% EDF subsidiary specialising in the treatment of very low to intermediate level short-lived nuclear waste. The company's head office and its main industrial site, CENTRACO, are located in Codolet in the Gard region of France. She is succeeding Eric Villatel, who retired after a forty-year career with the EDF Group.

In her new role as Managing Director of Cyclife France, Guénola Guillon is committed to maintaining the performance of Cyclife France's existing activities and to ensuring the company's growth through the development of projects and new activities, as well as the marketing of new radioactive waste treatment solutions for its customers, with the aim of addressing new markets in France and internationally. This growth ambition displayed by Cyclife France is fully in line with that of the European platform, Cyclife, to be the European leader in the nuclear decommissioning and radioactive waste management.

During her career, Guénola Guillon has already had the opportunity to work with Cyclife, the EDF subsidiary dedicated to strategic activities in the fields of nuclear decommissioning an radioactive waste management in France and worldwide.

"I am pleased to join Cyclife France. I will enthusiastically continue the work already accomplished by all the teams within the company to achieve our ambition of becoming a leader in the field of radioactive waste treatment. Teamwork, continuous training and openness are the keys to a company's performance, which essentially contribute to the fulfilment of each individual in his or her job".

Guénola is convinced that she has shared her work values with the company's employees. For her, ensuring the well-being of employees is a key factor "Cyclife France's main asset is the values of the women and men who make up the company. Professional fulfilment is not only linked to the activities to be carried out, but also to the quality of the work environment and the human relations. Working in a collaborative and respectful framework that allows everyone to express themselves is an essential part of individual fulfilment and collective performance".

Her background
During her studies, Guénola Guillon took a general engineering course at the Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées in Paris. During her professional career, she obtained a Management Master's degree from the IAE in Paris and completed an Executive MBA at INSEAD.

Guénola Guillon has a wide-ranging career path within the EDF Group. When she started, her professional objective was to combine technical and operational aspects in the energy sector. With this in mind, she joined the nuclear world of the EDF Group in 1999, joining the teams of the Technical Operations Unit in the Nuclear Production Division, as a project engineer for national maintenance operations. She continued her career at EDF as Head of Department and then Head of the Boilers and Valves Department at the Chinon nuclear power plant in 2003. She then moved to the nuclear production headquarters in Paris as a management controller, before taking up the position of Deputy Director of Unit Shutdown and Logistics at the Paluel nuclear power plant. In 2018, she seized the opportunity to join EDF Energy in the UK as Head of the Health, Safety and Environment Department.

Cyclife moves forward in Germany with the award of two long-term contracts from PreussenElektra for the dismantling and the treatment of 16 steam generators

Publish on 17/05/2021

Cyclife Sweden has been awarded on May 12th, 2021 a long-term contract for the transport and treatment of 16 steam generators from the German nuclear operator PreussenElektra. These large metallic components will be progressively transported from their operation site in Germany (nuclear power plants of Unterweser, Grafenrheinfeld, Grohnde and Brokdorf) to Sweden to be further processed in the melting facility of Cyclife Sweden. Cyclife Sweden is also in charge of the return transport of secondary waste to Germany, ensuring full compliance with applicable local rules and regulations.

This contract is a big step forward for the Swedish entity since it was acquired by the EDF Group in 2016 and confirms the dynamism of the waste treatment market at the international level, following other long-term contracts recently signed by Cyclife Sweden with nuclear operators in Italy and Sweden.

The treatment of steam generators is the core business of Cyclife Sweden, which has been developing a unique knowledge and process, continuously improved over the years. Cyclife Sweden is honoured to have been chosen by PreussenElektra to perform this key step of the decommissioning process. Cyclife confirms through this contract its strong commitment and involvement to support the German nuclear market with turn-key solutions.

This contract award is following a previous one, officialised in November 2020 by PreussenElektra, to dismantle the same 16 steam generators. Cyclife, with its subcontractor Framatome GmbH, will remove the components from the different reactor buildings and make them fully available for shipment and external treatment. Cyclife Engineering, the subsidiary of Cyclife created in 2019, will be in charge of detailed design studies. By combining this first success in the German decommissioning market to its historical and unique waste treatment capabilities, Cyclife is bringing forward the interest of the “Rip&Ship” model and of the waste-led decommissioning approach to handle large components in the decommissioning phase while securing the overall planning of dismantling operations.

The study phase for decommissioning operations have already started for the first nuclear power plant, located in Unterweser in the north of Germany. The first shipment of steam generators to Sweden is planned for the second quarter of 2023.

These two successes give a clear illustration of the synergies inside the EDF Group to provide our customer PreussenElektra with the best available combination of expertise in the fields of nuclear waste treatment and decommissioning.

Estelle Desroches appointed CEO of Cyclife

Publish on 11/03/2021

Since March 1st 2021, Estelle Desroches has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Cyclife by the Management of EDF Group (COMEX). Cyclife carries out strategic activities in the nuclear decommissioning and dismantling field as well as in the radioactive waste management in Europe and worldwide on the behalf of EDF. Thanks to its unique industrial and technological assets, Cyclife brings sustainable and innovative solutions based on advanced technology, such as robotics and digital.

Estelle Desroches manages Cyclife and its six subsidiaries in Europe: the radioactive waste treatment facilities in the United Kingdom, Sweden and in France; Cyclife Engineering which offers engineering, industrial design and project management services for the decommissioning of nuclear installations; Graphitech, specialised in the preparation for the nuclear decommissioning of reactors using graphite technology; and Cyclife Digital Solutions which supports decision-makers with innovative solutions based on real-time 3D technologies for nuclear decommissioning and maintenance.

As CEO of Cyclife, Estelle Desroches will take up three main challenges: the development of international customer portfolio, particularly in the UK and Germany in the fields of Light Water Reactor decommissioning, Graphite reactor decommissioning and Radioactive Waste management. Cyclife aims to become the European leader in nuclear decommissioning and waste management in a rapidly growing market. Another challenge is to provide EDF customers with high-performance services and support them in their future projects (major decommissioning operations, design and operation of new waste treatment facilities). The third challenge is to consolidate Cyclife’s unique industrial and technological assets, while maintaining the existing infrastructure by developing strong engineering skills, sustainable and innovative solutions in the nuclear decommissioning and waste management fields.

These are great challenges and an interesting industrial adventure to be built together with Cyclife’s teams!” commented Estelle Desroches, CEO of Cyclife. “I am honoured to have been chosen. To make a success of these ambitious projects in such short space of time requires continuing the transformation project initiated to build strong synergies between Cyclife and EDF and to mobilise all the players around these challenges”.

Previously, Estelle Desroches has been the Director of graphite reactor dismantling program for the nuclear dismantling and waste management division (DP2D) at EDF for five years. Since September 2019, she was simultaneously chairman of two subsidiaries of Cyclife (Graphitech and Cyclife Digital Solutions).

Aged of 49, Estelle Desroches holds a PhD in chemical engineering degree. She joined EDF Group in 1998 in R&D, where she managed projects and teams in the fields of hydraulics and environment. She continued her career within the Group, joining the Nuclear Fuel Division (DCN) in 2008 to work on the downstream cycle and nuclear waste management. From 2016 to February 2021, Estelle Desroches was the Director of graphite reactor dismantling program for the nuclear dismantling and waste management division (DP2D) at EDF Group.

Cyclife waste-metal treatment facility in Sweden to restart at full capacity in Q2-2021

Publish on 19/02/2021

The waste-metal treatment facility in Cyclife Sweden has restarted its melting operations early January 2021 and is planned to be back at full capacity in the second quarter of 2021 as new equipment will be set up in the beginning of 2021 in the large component cutting and treatment hall. The melting facility applies chemical and mechanical decontamination process for scrap metal and large components up to 30 meters length and 400 tons. Their metallurgical nature can be ferrous and non-ferrous (aluminium, copper, lead and special alloys).

The restart decision was officially communicated to Cyclife Sweden by the Swedish Nuclear Safety Authority on 17 November 2020, stressing the quality of all technical and safety optimizations that were performed in 2020, in particular ventilation and fire detection systems and processes. Since 18 December 2020, the facility has been running with limited capacity.
“I would like to congratulate the fantastic work achieved by the whole Cyclife Sweden team to make the facility up and running again in such a short time. Work has been very intense and we should be proud to see how our newly installed gas stirring system performs.” commented Ralf Norén, Managing director of Cyclife Sweden AB.

Cyclife Digital Solutions and Graphitech are partners of the European project Innov4Graph

Publish on 10/02/2021

Both Cyclife's subsidiaries, Cyclife Digital Solutions and Graphitech, contribute to the European project, Innov4Graph, coordinated by EDF Group. Over a period of three years, this project aims to create and deploy INNOvative tools FOR dismantling of GRAPHite moderated nuclear reactors. Innov4Graph is part of the programme led by the European Commission "Horizon 2020 EURATOM European Union funding for Research & Innovation".

This project brings together the know-how of thirteen European partners, including Graphitech and Cyclife Digital Solutions with its DEMplus® for nuclear application. This application checks the feasibility of operations during the removal of graphite bricks using simulations of several scenarios to improve the efficiency and ensure the reliability of the new tools under development.

You will find attached the official press release explaining how Innov4Graph project, through the development of physical and digital tools, as well as methods to support the decommissioning of European graphite reactors, is trying to answer questions such as "What are the most optimal ways to dismantle graphite reactors ?", "What remote tools can help operators to safely remove radioactive graphite?" and "What solutions will be the most cost-efficient for dismantling operations in reactors of such complexity and dimensions?".

Happy Holidays and Best Wishes for 2021!

Publish on 24/12/2020

From all the team at Cyclife, we hope that 2021 will prove that collaboration is the key to success.
Let's move forward together!
Happy holidays and best wishes for the New Year!



Cyclife Engineering has blown out its first candle!

Publish on 26/11/2020

Cyclife Engineering, a subsidiary of Group EDF, has just celebrated it first year in business. This dynamic engineering subsidiary is specialised in nuclear decommissioning and the design of radioactive waste storage and treatment facilities for France and abroad. Nearly 80 employees have already joined Cyclife Engineering despite a complicated context with the health crisis.
Diversity is a key element among teams with complementary experience.

Albin LANDY, a mechanical design engineer at Cyclife Engineering, tells us about his daily work:



Cyclife launches its Decommissioning business line in the UK

Publish on 13/10/2020

With the creation of its Decommissioning business line, Cyclife UK becomes the market-facing entity of the EDF Group in the country. In addition to its existing catalogue of consultancy and services in Waste Management, Cyclife UK will serve customers with the support of its sister companies: in the development of graphite reactor dismantling tools from Graphitech, 3D scenario and dose modelling from Cyclife Digital Solutions, and a range of advanced engineering design skills and peer review/benchmarking from Cyclife Engineering.

Cyclife has launched its decommissioning business in the UK with the recruitment of a team of specialists led by Emmanuelle Chardon, who has joined the company recently from Jacobs. As the market-facing decommissioning entity for the EDF Group in the UK, the new business line will also leverage the full learning and best practices developed on the French graphite reactor fleet and experience feedback from PWR (Pressurised Water Reactor) dismantling, along with the range of innovative and unique offerings developed by Cyclife UK’s sister companies (Graphitech, Cyclife Digital Solutions and Cyclife Engineering).

As well as developing a team of UK-based decommissioning specialists, we are strongly supported by EDF’s existing decommissioning teams and in particular the formation of Cyclife sister companies such as Graphitech”, explained Emmanuelle Chardon, Head of the Decommissioning at Cyclife UK. Graphitech is a joint venture company established in 2019 between Cyclife and Veolia Nuclear Solutions, engaged in developing tools for graphite reactor core dismantling and the design of an Industrial Demonstration facility at the Chinon NPP in France to test core dismantling techniques in full-scale.

A broad range of services across the decommissioning lifecycle

Cyclife has been paving the way for the UK nuclear industry to adopt a value-driving Waste-Led Decommissioning approach for over ten years. By implementing a truly waste-led decommissioning philosophy, customers are able to create value for money through liability reduction. Through the new Decommissioning Business Line, Cyclife UK will specifically offer the following services to customers across the decommissioning lifecycle:

  • Decommissioning strategy and scenario development pre-and post-defueling
  • Full-site decommissioning planning and implementation
  • Specialist engineering and design services
  • Specialist waste management and environmental consultancy services
  • Project planning, management and controls
  • On and offsite waste management services

“Through this unique combination of strategic planning, cutting-edge decommissioning technologies, site execution and embedded waste management services with full nuclear-liability transfer, Cyclife’s customers can take a new, holistic approach to decommissioning that will reduce interfaces, save time and cost, and ensure the safe delivery of clear and tangible progress.”, commented Joe Robinson, Managing Director of Cyclife UK.

A natural evolution

Since its acquisition by EDF in 2016, Cyclife in the UK has been requested by its customers to take on increasing complex projects involving consultancy, site works and waste shipments, which provide underpinning core skills to support the development of the Decommissioning business line. The company has previously provided decommissioning support to a portfolio of customers including Magnox, Sellafield and General Electric and already has the systems and personnel in place to deliver a wide range of decommissioning services, including strategy and programme management consultancy, scenario development and analysis, and technical engineering design and delivery.
Cyclife will initially focus on the development of decommissioning strategies and plans for customers particularly bringing to bear expertise developed in the decommissioning of nuclear facilities in France and a waste-led approach.

EDF Chinon Nuclear Power Plant, France

Picture at the top, the new Decommissioning team of Cyclife in the UK, from left to right:
  • Craig Preston, Senior Project Manager
  • Lisa Hughes, Principal Consultant
  • Neil Parton, Data Scientist
  • Nick Meek, Technical Manager
  • Emmanuelle Chardon, Head of Decommissioning
  • Tim Shoesmith and Tim Kane, Decommissioning Planners
Further colleagues are already confirmed to join the team.

Cyclife’s Swedish facility has started to receive SOGIN Garigliano NPP’s dismantling waste for treatment

Publish on 17/09/2020

SOGIN, the Italian State-owned company responsible for the decommissioning of Italian nuclear power plants and the management of radioactive waste, and Cyclife Sweden AB, a brand of the EDF Group, have started the shipment for the treatment of low-level waste of metal scrap of the Garigliano Nuclear Power Plant.
With a total of approx. 500 tons of metal scrap covered by the contract, the shipment from Garigliano to Nyköping will be split in several shipments as decommissioning progresses. The first shipment of approx. 80 tonnes has now safely arrived at the facility of Cyclife in Sweden. Cyclife will process the metallic waste with the aim to reduce the volume of waste for SOGIN to place in future Italian national repository, down to approximately 10% of its original volume. The bulk metal will, after clearance from regulatory control, be recycled back to industry as environmentally friendly raw material. The coming shipments of the rest of the metal scrap to Cyclife’s Swedish facility is planned in near future.
This project - Alfonso Maria Esposito, Head of Decommissioning of the Garigliano plant, declared - is part of Sogin's circular economy strategy, which is based on the minimization of radioactive waste and on the separation of metallic materials and concrete for their reuse and recycling. This strategy – Alfonso Maria Esposito continued - will allow Sogin to recycle 96% of the approximately 270,000 tons of materials which will be produced as a whole by the dismantling of the Garigliano plant”.
Thanks to the robust waste management consultancy campaign proposed by Cyclife Sweden AB, SOGIN had the authorization from the Italian State to process metal scrap at Cyclife Sweden AB. As a continuation of the same contract it is expected that within a short timeline the transports from Latina and Trino NPPs will commence.
Henrik Modéer, Managing Director of Cyclife Sweden AB ”Cyclife has once again proven to be a full-service provider to the nuclear industry and its decommissioning efforts. The dedicated team with staff both in Sweden and Italy has supported SOGIN in all engineering efforts to get all approvals in place and now the first transport has arrived from Garigliano. Cyclife is fully dedicated to support SOGIN and other nuclear installations in their important and challenging task of reducing and recycling metal waste volumes arising from decommissioning of nuclear plants”.
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