Plans for Africa’s nuclear-powered future

March 17, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear NewsZaf Coelho

The African continent is made up of 54 countries and can be broadly divided into North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. For global power, Africa is an emerging frontier that holds much promise and could potentially be a new sphere of influence. It has a larger land mass than India, China, the contiguous United States, and Eastern Europe combined, but it can be easy for those unfamiliar with the continent to underestimate its size, influence, and diversity. In the coming years, Africa will play a growing role in global economics and demographics.

With Kuosheng shut down, Taiwan has only two nuclear reactors left

March 17, 2023, 12:26PMNuclear News


The antinuclear energy policies of Taiwanese president Ing-wen Tsai, of Taiwan’s republic’s Democratic Progressive Party, stoked controversy on March 14 when the nation’s Kuosheng-2 nuclear power plant was taken off line to be decommissioned. Minister of economic affairs Mei-hua Wang, who oversees the state-run Taiwan Power Company (Taipower), claimed that the shutdown will not affect power supply because it will be offset by hydroelectric power, as well as gas- and coal-fired power plants. However, objectors to the shutdown claim the possibility of electricity blackouts, with opposition legislator I-ding Wu, of the Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist) Party, countering that renewable energy would be insufficient to meet Taiwan’s energy needs and that fossil fuels are “dirtier” and “more expensive.”

Nuclear-free homeland: Tsai came to office in 2016, promising to make Taiwan a “nuclear-free homeland” by 2025 by decommissioning all six of its operable nuclear reactors when their 40-year operating licenses expired.

Bill to foster civil nuclear export strategy debuts

March 17, 2023, 9:29AMNuclear News
The U.S. Capitol building.

Further building on their already secure reputations as nuclear energy supporters, Sens. Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.) and Jim Risch (R., Idaho) yesterday reintroduced the International Nuclear Energy Act (INEA). (The lawmakers are also cosponsors of two recently debuted nuclear-themed bills: February’s Nuclear Fuel Security Act and last week’s Reduce Russian Uranium Imports Act.)

Westinghouse’s ADOPT 6-percent enriched U fuel nears U.S. deployment

March 17, 2023, 7:01AMNuclear News
(Photo: Westinghouse)

Westinghouse Electric Company announced on March 14 that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has approved the use of the company’s Advanced Doped Pellet Technology (ADOPT) fuel pellets in U.S. pressurized water reactors. That approval brings the company closer to loading lead test assemblies containing ADOPT accident tolerant fuel pellets in Unit 2 of Southern Nuclear’s Vogtle plant.

GE Hitachi SMR reaches prelicensing milestone in Canada

March 16, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear News
A rendering of the BWRX-300 small modular reactor. (Image: NRC)

GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy’s (GEH’s) BWRX-300 technology has completed phases 1 and 2 of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s vendor design review (VDR) process, the Wilmington, N.C.–based company announced yesterday.

WM Symposia: The best presentations/papers of 2022

March 16, 2023, 12:00PMRadwaste Solutions

Hosted by Waste Management Symposia, the annual Waste Management Conference is widely regarded as the premier international conference on the management of radioactive material and related topics. The theme of this year’s conference, being held February 26-March 3 at the Phoenix Convention Center in Arizona, is “Planning for the Future: Innovation, Transformation, Sustainability.” The featured country for 2023 is France, which will be represented by numerous panels, papers, posters, and exhibits demonstrating the country’s continuous innovation and pragmatism in the management of the nuclear fuel cycle. The featured Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management topic is “EM’s Transformation in Radioactive Liquid Tank Waste Management.”

Each year, the two best oral presentations/papers from the previous year’s conference are recognized. Honoring the highest-quality presentations, the American Nuclear Society and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers each present an award for best presentation/paper. The following are the abstracts for the best ANS and ASME papers of 2022. The full papers are available to 2023 WM Conference participants through the WM Symposia website, at

EDF plans to extend life of Hartlepool, Heysham 1

March 16, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear News
EDF Energy’s Hartlepool nuclear plant, in northeastern England. (Photo: Wikipedia/Geni)

EDF Energy, owner and operator of the United Kingdom’s nuclear reactor fleet, announced last week that it intends to keep its Hartlepool and Heysham 1 stations in operation to March 2026—two years past their previously scheduled 2024 retirement dates. EDF added that an additional 12 months of operation beyond 2026 is being contemplated.

ANS panel discussion recaps CONTE 2023 presentations

March 16, 2023, 7:00AMNuclear News

For those who missed the recent Conference on Nuclear Training and Education: A Biennial International Forum (CONTE 2023), which was held on February 6–9 in Amelia Island, Fla., ANS hosted on March 9 an online panel discussion recapping selected highlights. The conference had the theme of “Maintaining Excellence Today—Building the Nuclear Workforce for Tomorrow!”

Four panelists summarized their CONTE presentations in the online discussion: Annaliese Piraino, instructional technologist at Energy Harbor’s Beaver Valley nuclear power plant; Sterling Parmenter, senior maintenance and technical instructor at Constellation Energy’s Nine Mile Point nuclear power plant; Lori Brady, senior director of human resources and training and development at the Nuclear Energy Institute; and David Helling, senior training advisor at Westinghouse Electric Company. The online event was moderated by Billy Wilson, senior engineer in nuclear training at Ontario Power Generation.

For more info on the CONTE meeting, visit CONTE 2023. Also available online is the recap webinar.

Entergy’s WIN chapter honored for promoting nuclear science

March 15, 2023, 3:00PMANS Nuclear Cafe

The Women in Nuclear chapter at Entergy Nuclear has been recognized by the U.S. WIN organization as the “most reactive” for its educational outreach efforts conducted during last year’s Nuclear Science Week.

The annual award recognizes significant achievements in promoting nuclear science in the community. U.S. WIN chapters are judged on the number of activities held during Nuclear Science Week, the number of participating WIN members, the number of individuals and public sectors reached, and the variety of topics covered.

Senators give Russian uranium ban another try

March 15, 2023, 12:01PMNuclear News



A bipartisan group in the Senate is making another attempt to ban Russian uranium with the introduction of S. 763, the Reduce Russian Uranium Imports Act, after similar legislation introduced in the previous Congress just under one year ago by Sen. John Barrasso (R., Wyo.) failed to advance.

Debuting March 9, the new bill is sponsored by Barrasso and Sens. Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.), Jim Risch (R., Idaho), Martin Heinrich (D., N.M.), Cynthia Lummis (R., Wyo.), Chris Coons (D., Del.), and Roger Marshall (R., Kan.). Specifically, S. 763 calls for prohibiting “the importation into the United States of unirradiated low-enriched uranium that is produced in the Russian Federation or by a Russian entity.”

How can advocates amplify global shifts in the nuclear energy narrative?

March 15, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear NewsParis Ortiz-Wines

Paris Ortiz-Wines

“Nuclear is finding its way into real acceptance and enthusiasm, and that’s really exciting.” So said secretary of energy Jennifer Granholm at the COP27 climate conference last November.

For the past 65 years, humanity has harnessed the power of the atom. Since the grid connection of the world’s first commercial nuclear plant in 1957, nuclear has been an unsung hero in providing reliable, clean energy for generations. Nuclear is the world’s fourth-largest source of energy and the second-largest low-carbon source of energy, per Our World in Data.

And yet, it wasn’t until September of 2021, when it became increasingly clear that the world was entering an energy crisis, that nuclear found its way back into the spotlight. Five months later, with the invasion of Ukraine, countries dependent on Russian gas found themselves in a precarious and costly position.

D&D of Navy nuclear barge to wrap up by April

March 15, 2023, 7:01AMRadwaste Solutions
The SSSB wet pit, which once held spent naval nuclear fuel, is demolished. (Photo: APTIM)

Nuclear dismantling and decommissioning company APTIM said it is on schedule to wrap up field activities decommissioning the U.S. Navy’s Surface Ship Support Barge (SSSB) by April, with project closure slated for June. The company announced yesterday that its team has completed the demolition of the barge’s former spent fuel water pool, also referred to as the “wet pit,” or the heart of the vessel.

NuScale places first long-lead material production order with Doosan

March 14, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear News
A rendering of a NuScale VOYGR plant. (Image: NuScale)

NuScale Power, the Portland, Ore.–based small modular reactor developer, announced last week that it has placed the first upper reactor pressure vessel (RPV) long-lead material (LLM) production order with South Korea’s Doosan Enerbility.

NRC approves restart of NIST test reactor

March 14, 2023, 12:00PMANS Nuclear Cafe

NIST's Center for Neutron Research in Gaithersburg, Md. (Photo: NRC)

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has authorized the restart of a test reactor at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, in Gaithersburg, Md. The reactor was shut down in February 2021 when a fuel element became damaged during startup and approach to full power. The incident violated the NRC’s fuel cladding temperature safety limit, although public health and safety were not affected, according to the agency.

The reactor is located at NIST’s Center for Neutron Research.

Senate hearing focuses on securing the entire U.S. nuclear fuel cycle

March 14, 2023, 9:39AMEdited March 14, 2023, 9:38AMNuclear News
In this screenshot from a video recording of the hearing, Huff, Wagner, and Dominguez answer a series of questions from Sen. Manchin

“Right now, our country is deficient in nearly every aspect of the fuel cycle. This must change and it must change quickly,” said Sen. Joe Manchin (D., W.V.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (ENR), as he opened a Full Committee Hearing to Examine the Nuclear Fuel Cycle on March 9. “Whether it is uranium mining, milling, conversion, enrichment, nuclear fuel fabrication, power generation, or nuclear waste storage and disposal, there is much work to be done, starting with conversion and enrichment. Simply put, Russia dominates the global market, representing nearly half of the international capacity for both processes.”

The U.S. NRC’s global efforts benefit everyone

March 14, 2023, 7:03AMNuclear NewsChristopher Hanson

Christopher Hanson

The origins of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s robust international program date back to 1953, when President Eisenhower, in an address to the United Nations, promised to share U.S. nuclear expertise with the world. This commitment underpins our international programs today.

The NRC’s early focus was cooperating with countries operating U.S. reactor technology to leverage collective operating experience. But requests for assistance grew steadily, and the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident made clear that international assistance was vital for global safety. We helped promote development of independent regulators in the former Soviet Union, and in a 1994 report, the independent NRC Office of the Inspector General praised how the NRC assisted Ukraine in establishing laws, regulations, and enforcement capacity.

PG&E response to Diablo Canyon opponents demonstrates strong legal precedent

March 13, 2023, 12:03PMNuclear News

Proponents of Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant received the heartening news on March 2 that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission had granted a “timely renewal” exemption to allow the plant to continue operating while its new license renewal application was under review. The exemption came after the NRC denied in January plant owner Pacific Gas & Electric’s request for the agency to resume review of its original license renewal application.

A window opens for the U.S. in global nuclear markets

March 13, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear NewsCraig Piercy

Craig Piercy

I have always enjoyed reading BP’s annual Energy Outlook. It’s usually the first major energy report of the new year, and while it is written by a fossil fuel company, it’s one with well-documented clean energy intentions. So, assuming you dial in the right “bias correction,” it’s a good hot take on macro energy trends.

The 2023 edition essentially confirms what we have all been thinking: The Russia-Ukraine war has caused “persistent effects” in the global energy landscape, which in turn have accelerated the shift to clean technologies.

Nuclear fares well. Its share of energy generation grows in all three of the report’s scenarios. In fact, only nuclear and renewables see growth as a percentage of total world primary energy between now and 2035.

First Xe-100 plant support center to open this year

March 13, 2023, 7:00AMNuclear News

X-energy, the Rockville, Md.–based small modular reactor developer, has announced its plan to open the first Xe-100 reactor fleet management, monitoring, and training facility—the Plant Support Center–East (PCSE)—in the fourth quarter of this year.