ASTRID (reactor)


ASTRID (Advanced Sodium Technological Reactor for Industrial Demonstration) was a proposal for a 600 MW sodium-cooled fast breeder reactor (Generation IV), proposed by the Commissariat à l'énergie atomique (CEA). It was to be built on the Marcoule Nuclear Site in France. It was the successor of the three French fast reactors Rapsodie, Phénix and Superphénix.

LocationMarcoule Nuclear Site
Coordinates44°08′34″N 4°42′32″E / 44.14278°N 4.70889°E / 44.14278; 4.70889Coordinates: 44°08′34″N 4°42′32″E / 44.14278°N 4.70889°E / 44.14278; 4.70889
StatusClosed project
Nuclear power station
Reactor typeSodium-cooled fast reactor (SFR)
Power generation
Units planned1 x 600 MW
Nameplate capacity
  • 600 MW

The main goals of ASTRID were the multi-recycling of plutonium, aiming at preserving natural uranium resources, minor actinide transmutation, aiming at reducing nuclear waste, and an enhanced safety comparable to Generation III reactors, such as the EPR. It was envisaged as a 600 MW industrial prototype connected to the grid. A commercial series of 1500 MW SFR reactors was planned to be deployed around 2050.[1]

As of 2012, the project involved 500 people, with almost half among industrial partners. Those included Électricité de France, Areva, Alstom Power Systems, Comex Nucléaire, Jacobs France, Toshiba and Bouygues Construction.[2]

In 2014 Japan agreed to cooperate in developing the emergency reactor cooling system, and in a few other areas.[3][4] As of 2016, France was seeking the full involvement of Japan in ASTRID development.[4][5] In November 2018 France informed Japan it will halt joint development.[6][7]

In August 2019 France cancelled ASTRID and sodium-breeder in general, with an official statement that “In the current energy market situation, the perspective of industrial development of fourth-generation reactors is not planned before the second half of this century. About €735 million had been spent on the project.[8][9][10]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Fast Neutron Reactors". World Nuclear Association. 5 November 2016.
  2. ^ "Le CEA et Bouygues Construction signent un accord de collaboration pour la conception d'ASTRID, prototype de réacteur nucléaire de 4ème génération". CEA. 26 June 2012. Retrieved 2014-11-02.
  3. ^ Tara Patel, Gregory Viscusi (5 May 2014). "Japan to Work With France on Future Fast-Breeder Atomic". Bloomberg. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
  4. ^ a b "France wants Japan to share 570 billion yen ASTRID reactor development cost". The Mainichi. 22 October 2016. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Ministries spar as Japan focuses on fast reactor project in France". Asahi Shimbun. 22 September 2016. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
  6. ^ Tsuji, Takashi (30 November 2018). "France halts joint nuclear project in blow to Japan's fuel cycle". Nikkei Asian Review. Retrieved 11 December 2018.
  7. ^ "France reconsiders Astrid fast reactor project". Nuclear Engineering International. 30 November 2018. Retrieved 11 December 2018.
  8. ^ "France cancels ASTRID fast reactor project". Nuclear Engineering International. 2 September 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  9. ^ Geert De Clercq (30 August 2019). "France drops plans to build sodium-cooled nuclear reactor". Reuters. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
  10. ^ "Nuclear: France abandons the ASTRID project costing 730 million euros". MBS News. 31 August 2019. Retrieved 2019-09-09.

External linksEdit

  • The ASTRID Technological Demonstrator