International entities that introduce new regulations for the construction of Nuclear Power Plants are constantly migrating their document management systems towards digital technology which provides a greater degree of reliability. Imagine, for example, the possibility to store all the traceability information of the production processes involved in the millions of mechanical components that make up a Reactor forever. This technology already exists, it is called: Blockchain. Blockchain which refers to “a chain of blocks" consists of a set of digital technologies that allow us to keep a secure, decentralized, synchronized and distributed record of certain digital information. Blockchain is a database that uses cryptography to provide maximum immutability and reliability when storing information.Read More
As a result, the world's major regulators are beginning to see Blockchain technology as the natural evolution in the task of providing reliability to an industrial activity as sensitive and critical as nuclear energy. Let’s take the most recognized worldwide association in the development of nuclear regulations the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) as an example. ASME has already begun to make some publications on the potential advantages of Blockchain technology applied to the nuclear field. You can visit their website to find out more.
Innovation introduced by NUCLEARIS In October 2020, after 4 years of intense work for our specialized team of programmers, NUCLEARIS became the first company worldwide to implement Blockchain technology to monitor its production process information and to store traceability-related data. Today, the manufacturing process information of the hundreds of highly critical mechanical parts in the core of Atucha I & II Nuclear Power Plants is perpetually stored in the Blockchain. To better understand the attributes of this technology, we must first observe how the current methodology for recording information in the nuclear industry works. Nowadays, it is necessary to create documents and records in each of the stages of the production process- the extraction of minerals, the smelting of metals, steel refining, heat treatments, machining, welding, surface coatings, and so on. Engineers around the world are required to upload information in pre-established forms with quantitative and qualitative data on each of the processes involved in the manufacture of mechanical parts destined to be installed in a Nuclear Reactor. These forms are then printed and attached to a folder that accompanies the raw materials, materials, semi-finished and finished products at all times along the way. This hard copy of the documentation must then be delivered with the mechanical components and the Nuclear Power Plant managers must store it for the entire life of the Reactor, that is, for several decades. It should be noted that the production process of a nuclear-mechanical component, from mining to the finished product, can take several months, even years. Transporting papers together with the mechanical components may seem an "unsafe" methodology, however, this is how the traceability of mechanical components is carried out in the nuclear industry worldwide and how international regulations require it to be done.
What NUCLEARIS has achieved represents a disruption in the nuclear industry by making the “paper” methodology obsolete. We have accomplished this task by developing a software platform based on Blockchain to save the data on the manufacturing processes in an immutable way thanks to the creation of a cryptographic hash attached exclusively to a specific file. The hash, created using encryption algorithms, is like a “fingerprint” of the documentation stored. Moreover, it allows us to save the data perpetually in a way in which it can neither be altered nor tampered with. Immutability is an inherent virtue of Blockchain technology.
In the nuclear industry, traceability really “means everything”. Nuclearis’ project can be defined as a decentralized database and an encrypted storage system in which the manufacturers of the different mechanical components in the world save their documentation while the processes are taking place. Let’s now imagine a world in which NUCLEARCHAIN exists: all the activities related to manufacturing nuclear mechanical components in the world are registered on the same blockchain. That will represent the biggest revolution in trust in our industry.