Engineering services contract signed for first Polish plant

September 29, 2023, 6:55AMNuclear News
At the September 27 signing ceremony for the engineering services contract to build Poland’s first nuclear power plant are, from left, John Howanitz, president of Bechtel’s nuclear, security, and environmental global business unit; Westinghouse president and CEO Patrick Fragman; Polish government plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure Anna Łukaszewska-Trzeciakowska; Polish prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki; U.S. ambassador to Poland Mark Brzezinski; assistant secretary of energy for international affairs Andrew Light; and Polskie Elektrownie Jądrowe president Mateusz Berger. (Photo: Bechtel)

Just one week after inking a consortium agreement to partner on the design and construction of Poland’s first nuclear power plant, Westinghouse Electric Company and Bechtel joined state-owned Polish utility Polskie Elektrownie Jądrowe (PEJ) in Warsaw on Wednesday for the signing of the project’s engineering services contract.

According to a Westinghouse-Bechtel joint announcement, the contract’s scope includes finalizing a site-specific design for three Generation III+ Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear islands; turbine island and balance-of-plant design work; and support for PEJ to prepare license application materials, training programs, and operations and maintenance procedures. The work outlined in the 18-month contract will begin immediately, the announcement stated, with commercial operation of the first unit expected in 2033.

A site in northern Poland’s Pomeranian voivodeship, Lubiatowo-Kopalino, was chosen as the location of the historic project early last year.

Official words: U.S. government officials attending the signing ceremony included ambassador to Poland Mark Brzezinski and assistant secretary of energy for international affairs Andrew Light.

Brzezinski called the contract “one of the most significant steps forward to date in U.S.-Polish civil nuclear cooperation,” adding, “Our hope is to support Poland as it becomes a hub for civil nuclear technology deployment. Energy security is national security, and America’s security is interdependent with Poland’s security.”

Light said that “Poland will deploy the most advanced and proven nuclear technology available today, that will provide clean, safe, and reliable power, and create tens of thousands secure and sustainable energy jobs over multiple generations” and that the project “will further cement Poland as a premier center for advanced net-zero energy solutions, which will protect our citizens from climate change while ensuring energy independence.”

Westinghouse president and chief executive officer Patrick Fragman termed the agreement “a transformational moment for Poland, for our partners, and for Westinghouse,” further declaring that “the breadth of the work we are performing here, as we create the foundations of a nuclear energy program where none existed before, will be a model for other countries that seek decarbonization and energy security through safe, reliable nuclear energy.”

Craig Albert, Bechtel’s president and chief operating officer, lauded the project in similar language, describing it as “vital to the country’s energy-security and energy-transition goals,” while Mateusz Berger, president of PEJ’s management board, noted, “This moment is the culmination of very intensive work by many people from the Polish and U.S. government administrations, as well as employees of PEJ, Westinghouse, and Bechtel, for which I would like to thank everyone.”

In case you missed it: On Tuesday, Westinghouse announced that it had signed a contract with Liaoning Nuclear Power Company Ltd. and China Nuclear Power Engineering Company Ltd. to supply instrumentation and control systems for Xudabao Units 1 and 2—the AP1000 technology–based reactors (CAP1000s) approved for construction by China’s State Council in July.

The U.S. firm’s digital I&C platform is currently installed in China’s four operating AP1000 units—the 1,157-MWe Sanmen-1 and -2 and the 1,170-MWe Haiyang-1 and -2.

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