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pressure drop across the nozzle. Based on the results of the pre-


production testing, the Westinghouse design team made a few more design tweaks, as well as manufacturability improvements, such as modifying radii and chamfer sizes and adjusting toler- ances for many features. Frequently consulting with the casting supplier led to a final design with excellent process capability and minimal rework or scrap. “What is different about this


process was that most engineering companies engineer and send out the drawings, and that’s it,” Lewis said. “We met with our supplier twice and they came to our facility once, before we even issued our first drawing. Tat way, we were able to leverage the knowledge base of the supplier.”


From Cast Part to Nuclear Power


Production parts of the new design


were approved and ready for the world’s first AP1000 reactor at China’s Sanmen Unit 1, located in the coun- try’s Zhejiang province. Westinghouse has contracts to build four AP1000 reactors in China and four in the U.S. from 2012 through 2016, with the first reactors powering up in 2014. Te final nozzle design weighed


18 lbs. and resulted in at least a 30% pressure reduction in the nozzle, which meant Westinghouse could use a lower capacity reactor pump. Te new nozzles also were developed so they could be used with the exist- ing reactors. Te supply chain team reported that decreased forces in the fuel assembly reduced the propensity for the assembly to bow and eased the on- and off-loading of the reactor core. Te new design significantly stream- lined the value stream for the nozzle to just one supplier, which reduced the component’s total cost of ownership and administrative management bur- den. Each reactor requires 150 nozzles. “We are looking to find the


most effective use of our resources,” Peterson said. “We wanted a turn- key supplier that provided us with a nozzle we could directly put into the assembly. It helped us with lead time and inventory and eventually will help with overall cost.” 


Jan/Feb 2013 | METAL CASTING DESIGN & PURCHASING | 25


By casting the nozzle, Westinghouse Electric could design an optimized flow plate pattern into the part.


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