Atos Origin Monitors More Than 58 Nuclear Power Plants in France with Bustec VXIbus Boards

Atos Origin Monitors More Than 58 Nuclear Power Plants in France with Bustec VXIbus Boards

Company: ATOS Origin 
Industry: Nuclear Power
Challenge: Creating a system to perform monitoring and predictive analytics on critical equipment in more than 58 French nuclear power plants and crucial data from 70 power turbines for nuclear and conventional power plants, while delivering real-time data of all measured values in a system supported by VxWorks.
Solution: Using the Bustec VXI platform to quickly collect data with superior analog performance, versatile signal conditioning, and the capability for on-the-fly system calibration.


EDF, the world’s leading nuclear power utility, operates a French nuclear power plant fleet consisting of 58 reactors spread over 19 different sites. EDF chose Atos Origin to create monitoring applications for their systems across France. Atos provides the nuclear industry with proven Digital Control System (DCS), full scope engineering and training simulators (FSS), and intelligent predictive maintenance systems.

EDF required monitoring of critical equipment in all 58 of their nuclear power plants in France, along with monitoring of all crucial data for 70 power turbines for the nuclear and conventional power plants. Atos needed to design a system that could achieve successful monitoring and deliver all of the monitored data in real time. In addition, Atos needed VxWorks support to integrate with existing systems, as well as a powerful digital signal processor (DSP)forpower spectra and FFT calculations.

Atos chose to standardize their system on the VXIbus platform, a well-established IEEE standard with proven technology. The combination of analog accuracy and bandwidth requirements for the EDF system was best handled by VXIbus technology, which includes benefits such as high channel-count density and availability of DSP power on A/D boards. Atos was confident that because the VXIbus platform is a technology proven over time, a VXI-based system would be sustained and supported for decades to come. 

Atos chose to use Bustec products on the VXI platform, because products offered on the Bustec VXI line have the highest sustained data rate per second of all VXIbus vendors (at the time of system conception up to 100 MB/s sustained, now up to 200 MB/s), a very high analog quality (up to SNR 117 dB), and powerful onboard DSP for real-time derived data (TigerSHARC). In addition, Bustec provided onboard FFT calculations, support for VxWorks, and all of the DSP code necessary for the project.

With their VXI-based Bustec system, Atos could measure from 40 to 130 data points per station with direct measured variables, including flow, temperature, pressure, electric variables, vibration, and digital I/O. The system also provided information such as real-time calculations on a DSP, flow measurements in terms of nominal operating conditions, natural frequency of structure data, warming data, and power spectrum information. In addition, the system was configured to monitor all critical data for fault identification, including areas such as the internal reactor structure, primary pumps, steam inlet valves on turbines, the turbo generator shaft, generators, and loose particle detection in primary and secondary circuits.

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