Press Information

MHI Completes Construction of Production Facility Dedicated to
Forged Turbine Blades for Nuclear Power Generation
- Enabling Production of World's Largest 70-inch Class Blades -

No.1331
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Tokyo, January 20, 2010 - Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) has completed the construction of a new manufacturing facility at its Takasago Machinery Works in Hyogo Prefecture that is dedicated to production of forged turbine blades for nuclear power plants (NPP), a core component of nuclear power generation systems. The new state-of-the-art facility, which can integrally perform all processing required for blade production, commenced operation today.

The new facility further enhances MHI's capability to supply high-quality forged blades, including one of the world's largest 70-inch class turbine blades, for NPPs in Japan and other countries. The facility also will be an important production base for large-size NPPs, including US-APWR and EU-APWR NPPs. The US-APWR and EU-APWR are MHI's 1,700 MWe (megawatt electric) class advanced pressurized water reactors (APWR) for the US and EU markets, respectively.

Construction of the facility began in April 2009 and was completed in eight months. The new facility is central to MHI's initiative to significantly strengthen its production structure for high-efficiency, large-size NPP turbines, which are expected to see increasing demand in the years ahead.

Incorporating an array of the industry's most advanced production equipment and processing methods, the facility achieves expanded unmanned machining in blade shaping and surface processing, enabling both quality enhancement and cost reduction. Coupled with a facility dedicated to NPP-use steam turbine rotor production completed last September, the new facility will strongly underpin MHI's production and supply of high-efficiency, large-size NPP turbines.

NPP turbines are a key component of nuclear power generation systems that efficiently convert thermal energy produced by steam generators into rotational energy. The turbine - a rotating body - is composed mainly of forged blades and a rotor that functions as the turbine shaft or axis into which the blades are set. To date MHI has manufactured and supplied turbines for all 24 pressurized water reactor (PWR) NPPs in operation in Japan - a total power output equivalent to more than 20,000 MWe. The company has also received export orders for NPP turbines for PWRs from countries including China, Spain and Slovenia. For boiled water reactors (BWR), MHI has delivered NPP turbines to Mexico and Taiwan.

MHI is one of the world's leading suppliers capable of satisfying all NPP-related needs: from basic planning and design of PWR NPPs to manufacture, inspection, installation, test operation and services after startup. Based on its track record of numerous PWR NPP constructions, the company is currently conducting marketing activities and business negotiations for the US/EU-APWRs, which are among the world's largest PWRs. At ATMEA, a joint venture between MHI and AREVA, the "ATMEA1," a 1,100 MWe class PWR, is also being developed. MHI has further been focusing its activities on an APWR planned for construction in Japan and on the development of a next-generation PWR, demand for which is expected to emerge around 2030.

MHI's initiative to construct dedicated facilities for NPP turbines is the company's response to robust development of this market. Going forward, leveraging the completion of its new facilities forming a strong production and supply base of high-efficiency, large-size NPP turbines able to accommodate advanced PWR plants, the company aims to step up its aggressive marketing activities for its PWRs and components.

 

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