Detailed studies, VISA for the Jules Horowitz Research Reactor Project

Project management Nuclear France

Context and challenges

The Jules Horowitz Research Reactor (RJH) project, led by the CEA's Nuclear Energy Division, aims to meet a key scientific and technological challenge: to test the behaviour of materials and fuels under irradiation, in support of current and future nuclear reactors.

The RJH project is currently under construction at the CEA Cadarache site and brings together within an international consortium leading French companies in the nuclear field, the European Commission, and research organisations from the following countries : Belgium, Czech Republic, Spain, Finland, India, Israel, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

As part of the construction of the RJH research reactor, Assystem has been mandated by one of the French industrialists in the consortium (which supplies the reactor block and is the prime contractor for the site) to carry out a complete project management assistance mission. This mission consists in carrying out detailed studies and verification (VISA) of civil engineering plans/notes for the buildings and installations of the Jules Horowitz Research Reactor, as part of batch B01 (civil engineering). The project was carried out in consortium with a public works company.

Project scope

  • Extraction from the CATIA digital mock-up of the civil engineering guide plans for the detailed studies and execution studies files.
  • Preparation of the file of detailed studies plans for the civil engineering design office responsible for the design, in order to carry out the detailed calculations of the works
  • Drawing up of the execution studies plan file for the civil engineering design office of the Civil Engineering contractor, in order to draw up the execution plans
  • VISA of execution documents and alert on deviations from the digital mock-up
  • Monitoring mission: follow-up of exchange sheets, assistance in handling non-conformities, technical monitoring
  • Additional missions :
    • Dimensioning of secondary structures: execution calculations for the project's metal staircases and the metal aedicules on the reactor building roof
    • Consideration of the earthquake risk by modal spectral analysis with application of the transferred spectra provided by the civil engineering design office responsible for the design (a civil engineering consortium): technical expertise, establishment of detailed reinforcement minutes, reinforcement optimisation, sizing of anchorage plates (non-exhaustive list)
  • Participation in the hot cell study platform, in order to establish 3D reinforcement kinematics on a complex area due to the high density of embedded parts and reinforcement

Client benefits

  • Financial and efficiency gains thanks to the implementation of a fixed-price contract that optimizes the resources mobilised on the project platform
  • Successful deployment of resources for complementary missions through the integration of multi-skilled and specialised civil engineering profiles
  • Improvement of the client's decision-making process through independent and unbiased feedback on the visa mission
  • Analysis of the documents within the time limit thanks to the implementation of a contract including penalties

In figures


engineering hours


documents referring to index A


documents referring to all indexes


guidance plans prepared

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