Context and challenges
HPC, Hinkley Point C, is the first EPR project in the UK. The first work began on this PWR reactor project in July 2008 with construction starting in 2016. HPC is a 3,200 MWe nuclear power station with two EPR reactors in Hinkley, Somerset, England.
The HPC project is jointly funded by two major players in nuclear.
With supply of the components for the reactors coming from all over the world, it is necessary to have an integrated supply chain quality system in order to ensure that all components arrive on-time and to the correct quality.
In 2019, Assystem was appointed by one of the major nuclear players of this project to manage the supply chain quality system.
Creation with HPC and management of the supply chain quality functions:
- Quality Management Leads (QMLs, in the UK and in France): perform end-to-end management of quality on a specific contract. Assystem was responsible for ensuring that the product delivered to site was in compliance with the HPC contract, working closely with the audit team.
- Audit: Managing the programme of audits for main HPC suppliers, ensuring manufacturing of components or systems complies with the contract from HPC.
- Manufacturing Hub (FR): Based from Paris, this department ensured the co-ordination of all of the manufacturing surveillance across the supply chain working closely with the QMLs and Audit team.
- Quality Planning & improvements aligned with ONR (Office for Nuclear Regulation) Site Licence Condition 6 (documents, records, authorities and certificates) and Non-Conformity Report concerns.
- Time savings for recruitment and on-boarding of new resources, enabling a high number of new recruits required by the client (80% of all NND (New Nuclear Build) quality recruits are from Assystem)
- Reduction of issues thanks to the reduction of interfaces with a single supplier interface for all aspects of supplier quality
- Good coordination and work with a high number of suppliers thanks to involvement of International team able to working across UK, France and other countries
- Mobilising highly competent and knowledgeable staff at short notice to assist in lessons learned and pre-operation of the plant e.g. engineering and commissioning (with a high level of EPR experience from design through to commissioning on FA3 and OL3)
- Preventing peaks and falls of demand for the customer and implementing of a graded approach to the use of junior or senior people thanks to a structured approach to Quality Provision