Atos’ business Eviden and Schneider Electric have secured a major contract from French electric utility company EDF to supply control systems for six nuclear power plants.

Worldgrid, an affiliate of Eviden specialising in energy management solutions and nuclear control systems, will carry out the works under the contract, on behalf of Eviden.

Under the contract, Eviden and Schneider Electric will supply the Level 1 standard control systems for EDF’s six planned nuclear power plants (EPR2).

EDF has recently initiated the authorisation procedures for the construction of the first two EPR2 nuclear power plant units at Penly and Normandy, planned for mid-2024.

Worldgrid and Schneider Electric are preparing work to design, qualify and build the future Level 1 standard control systems for the two nuclear units.

Worldgrid Eviden, Atos Group CEO Emmanuel Besse said: “We are proud to contribute to the renaissance of the nuclear industry in France! This major contract underlines our 45 years of experience in the field of nuclear command and control.

“By working with other European companies on this project, we are helping to support Europe’s nuclear energy sovereignty, which is essential to support over the years as we transition to the decarbonised energy mix.”

Schneider Electric France operations executive vice-president Laurent Bataille said: “With design and production rooted in our sites in the South-East of France, Schneider Electric is delighted to continue its long-standing partnership with the French nuclear industry, while helping to make France’s energy mix more resilient and low carbon.”

Worldgrid, from its ISERAN campus in the Grenoble region, will carry out the integrating and programming work for the programmable logic controllers (PLCs).

It will also provide all the software required for automating the translation of control function diagrams into PLC programmes.

Schneider Electric will supply the hardware infrastructure built around the M580 PLCs, from its engineering and design office based in Aix-en-Provence in France.

The M580 PLCs will be designed to meet the qualification level in terms of nuclear safety and enable EDF effectively manage and control its nuclear reactors.

Worldgrid plans to recruit 150 people this year, with 50% of them in the nuclear sector, and Schneider Electric is also working to strengthen its nuclear teams.