Pressure tubes are life-limiting components for CANDU nuclear reactors. Knowing the material condition of pressure tubes is critical to ensuring that they continue to operate well within their operating margin and design life. Confirmation of component aging is also critical to the maintenance of regulatory compliance and public confidence.

The Zirconium pressure tubes used in CANDU are susceptible to delayed hydride cracking (DHC). This phenomenon is caused by hydrides forming at crack tips, embrittling that region so that it fails under the stress and the crack grows. The hydrides themselves are made possible by enhanced hydrogen levels that arise as zirconium absorbs hydrogen in the reactor environment.

We have been working on pressure tube issues and DHC for decades enabling us to build a significant wealth of knowledge on the subject. Our expert team benefits from access to our in-house advanced test facilities which enable them to perform research and development into various degradation mechanisms associated with the Zr-2.5Nb pressure tubes used in CANDU reactors.

Why Us?

  • 70 Years of Experience

    We have been performing research and development on the Zr-2.5Nb (zirconium) pressure tube material used in CANDU reactors for over 70 years and have developed a considerable wealth of knowledge about how it performs in its working environment. We use that knowledge to resolve arising issues.

  • Up to Date and Relevant

    Our experts actively participate as subject matter experts and key participants in industry committees that assist in the development of standards, most notably CSA N285.8 and N285.4. This work ensures that we are always up to date with the state of knowledge and of regulatory expectations.

  • Global Recognition

    The in-depth understanding and comprehensive knowledge of the various degradation conditions CANDU pressure tubes can experience that we have developed is recognized by CANDU operators and their regulators around the world.

  • Advanced Test Facility

    By continually investing in our advanced facilities we are to investigate and disposition emerging industry issues and respond to changing regulatory requirements. We are the trusted source for research in this unique field.