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Enrichment: Launch of Commercial Production of Georges Besse II North

(PresseBox) (Paris, ) Luc Oursel, President and CEO of AREVA, along with local elected representatives and economic players from the Rhône Valley, celebrated today the commercial launch of the Georges Besse II North uranium enrichment plant at the Tricastin site (Drôme and Vaucluse).

The North plant enters into service two years after the South plant in accordance with the project schedule.

This decisive step means that, beginning in April 2013, the delivery of the first cylinders of enriched uranium to AREVA's fuel fabrication plants and its clients can go ahead.

In 2006, AREVA began a modernization program of its industrial facilities in order to ensure the uranium supply to its utility customers. This program will enable AREVA to have an enrichment capacity of 7.5 million SWU* per year.

Georges Besse II is being ramped-up gradually between now and 2016. Using centrifugation technology, it consumes 50 times less electricity than the gaseous diffusion technology previously used.

During the ceremony, Luc Oursel explained that "this is not only a significant investment for the group and its customers, but also for the local area. Two-thirds of the work at the Georges Besse II plant was carried out with local industry partners who demonstrated their dedication through their contribution to an on-time delivery. This will sustain our base in the region over the next forty years."

*Separative Work Unit


AREVA supplies solutions for power generation with less carbon. Its expertise and unwavering insistence on safety, security, transparency and ethics are setting the standard, and its responsible development is anchored in a process of continuous improvement.

Ranked first in the global nuclear power industry, AREVA's unique integrated offering to utilities covers every stage of the fuel cycle, nuclear reactor design and construction, and related services. The Group is also expanding its operations to renewable energies - wind, solar, bioenergies, hydrogen and storage - to be one of the leaders in this sector worldwide.

With these two major offers, AREVA's 47,000 employees are helping to supply ever safer, cleaner and more economical energy to the greatest number of people.