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Enrichment

With Orano's uranium enrichment capabilities, customers benefit from thirty years experience and all the advantages of centrifugation — the most efficient technology in the world.

Orano offers uranium enrichment for its customers (delivered in the form of uranium hexafluoride - UF6) in an agreed amount between 2 and 5%, for ongoing tails assays.

The new George Besse II enrichment plant represents one of the largest French industrial investments of the decade. The plant uses a new process - centrifugation - which ensures the highest levels of competitiveness, energy savings, technical reliability and reduced environmental impact.

  • Production capacity of 7.5 SWUs*/year or the equivalent of powering 70 reactors (*Separative Work Units)

Uranium enrichment

Enrichment involves increasing the uranium 235 content of natural uranium to a level between 3% and 5% to enable reactivity of the fuel in accordance with the needs of the reactors.

Using the uranium hexafluoride (UF6) resulting from the conversion, the isotopic separation enrichment plant produces:

Enriched uranium with a uranium 235 content increased to a level of 3% to 5%, depending on customer needs. Enriched uranium is used by 90% of nuclear reactors in operation in the world today.

Depleted uranium, whose uranium 235 content is approximately 0.2%. This will be converted to uranium oxide (U3O8) so that it can be stored in a solid and stable form. This represents a reserve of energy resources. This operation is known as "defluoration" and is performed on the Tricastin site.