EPURE is a French/UK joint research facility located on a site operated by the French CEA’s military applications division (DAM), in Valduc (France).

EPURE enables France and UK to have an enhanced radiographic and hydrodynamic capability to underwrite the reliability and safety of their nuclear warheads.

This facility is designed to conduct explosively driven hydrodynamic trials in a safe and secure manner, with state of the art diagnostics.
Hydrodynamic experience allows to study materials submitted to extreme deformation velocity (thousands of km/s).

FR-UK EPURE facility at CEA/DAM VALDUC centre (building entrance view)

FR-UK EPURE facility at CEA/DAM VALDUC centre (site view)

EPURE is compliant with the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), ratified in 1998 by both France and UK, which prohibits any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion.


Airix flash x-ray radiographic machine installed in the EPURE facility

Ultimately including three high-power radiographic axes, EPURE was commissioned in October 2014 with a French flash x-ray radiographic axis (AIRIX machine).

The radiographic images are used to improve the physics in the computer models which numerically simulate the nuclear weapon’s materials implosions.

Simulation of instabilities occuring in the functioning of nuclear warheads