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

Robert Bogue (Okehampton, UK)

Industrial Robot

ISSN: 0143-991x

Publication date: 8 March 2011

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.

Keywords

Citation

Bogue, R. (2011), "Robots in the nuclear industry: a review of technologies and applications", Industrial Robot, Vol. 38 No. 2, pp. 113-118. https://doi.org/10.1108/01439911111106327

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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