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Robots in the nuclear industry: a review of technologies and applications

Robots in the nuclear industry: a review of technologies and applications Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of the uses of robots in the nuclear power industry, with an emphasis on newer developments and applications. Design/methodology/approach – Following an introduction to the nuclear industry, this paper considers robotic applications in two areas: test and inspection and decommissioning. A range of products, applications and case histories are discussed. Findings – It is shown that robots are used widely for test and inspection and decommissioning tasks. The majority are highly specialised and are frequently produced by specialist nuclear engineering companies. The main robotic test and inspection techniques are visual inspection, ultrasonics and eddy current and the use of robots reflects both the need to minimise operator exposure to radiation and the frequent difficulties in accessing critical components such as pressure vessel welds and steam generator tubes. Key decommissioning uses include handling and size reduction of contaminated materials, cutting and demolition. Originality/value – This paper provides details of inspection and decommissioning robots in the nuclear power industry. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Industrial Robot: An International Journal Emerald Publishing

Robots in the nuclear industry: a review of technologies and applications

Industrial Robot: An International Journal , Volume 38 (2): 6 – Mar 8, 2011

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0143-991X
DOI
10.1108/01439911111106327
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of the uses of robots in the nuclear power industry, with an emphasis on newer developments and applications. Design/methodology/approach – Following an introduction to the nuclear industry, this paper considers robotic applications in two areas: test and inspection and decommissioning. A range of products, applications and case histories are discussed. Findings – It is shown that robots are used widely for test and inspection and decommissioning tasks. The majority are highly specialised and are frequently produced by specialist nuclear engineering companies. The main robotic test and inspection techniques are visual inspection, ultrasonics and eddy current and the use of robots reflects both the need to minimise operator exposure to radiation and the frequent difficulties in accessing critical components such as pressure vessel welds and steam generator tubes. Key decommissioning uses include handling and size reduction of contaminated materials, cutting and demolition. Originality/value – This paper provides details of inspection and decommissioning robots in the nuclear power industry.

Journal

Industrial Robot: An International JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Mar 8, 2011

Keywords: Robots; Nuclear energy industry; Nuclear reactors; Nuclear radiation; Inspection

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