Obstacles to new nuclear in Sweden cleared

December 4, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear News

Aerial view of Sweden’s parliament building, Riksdagshuset, in Stockholm. (Photo: Arild Vågen/Wikipedia)

Sweden’s parliament, the Riksdag, has approved legislative amendments from Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson’s government that will remove the country’s prohibition on new reactor construction at sites other than Sweden’s three current nuclear plants—Forsmark, Ringhals, and Oskarshamn—and do away with the limitation on the number of simultaneously operating reactors, currently capped at 10.

The amendments enter force on January 1.

“The Riksdag shares the government’s assessment that fossil-free electricity from nuclear power will also continue to play a role of central importance in the Swedish energy mix,” the legislative body said in a statement following the November 29 vote. “The main reasons for this are an expected greater demand for electricity in combination with the fact that fossil fuels have to be phased out, particularly for climate reasons. Nuclear power also contributes to the stable and predictable functioning of the Swedish power system.”

Westinghouse, OPG to explore reactor deployment opportunities

November 30, 2023, 12:01PMNuclear News
Westinghouse’s Fragman (left) and OPG’s Ken Hartwick at the World Nuclear Exhibition in Paris. (Photo: Westinghouse)

Westinghouse Electric Company and Ontario Power Generation have signed a memorandum of understanding establishing a framework to identify potential areas of cooperation for the deployment of nuclear technologies in Canada, the companies jointly announced this morning. (While based in Cranberry Township, Pa., Westinghouse is owned by Canadian firms Brookfield Asset Management and Cameco.)

Saskatchewan government provides C$80 million for eVinci demonstration

November 28, 2023, 3:01PMNuclear News
eVinci Technologies president Jon Ball (left) and SRC president and CEO Mike Crabtree in front of a scale mock-up of an eVinci microreactor at SRC. (Photo: Westinghouse)

Saskatchewan premier Scott Moe yesterday announced C$80 million (about $59 million) for the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) to pursue demonstration of Westinghouse Electric Company’s eVinci microreactor technology.

Cameco, Brookfield complete Westinghouse acquisition

November 10, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear News

Cameco, the front-end uranium mining, milling, and conversion company headquartered in Saskatchewan, Canada, is now officially a co-owner of Westinghouse Electric Company—alongside Brookfield Asset Management, its publicly listed affiliate Brookfield Renewable Partners, and its institutional partners.

Webinar showcases “Hispanic Excellence in the Nuclear Field”

November 6, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear News

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month this year, which ran September 15-October 15, the American Nuclear Society hosted the webinar “Hispanic Excellence in the Nuclear Field” on September 20. The panelists shared insights from their accomplished careers and relayed personal anecdotes and practical advice to young nuclear professionals. They also voiced their thoughts about challenges and opportunities facing the Hispanic community in the field.

Final bids submitted for new reactor at Czech plant

November 2, 2023, 12:00PMNuclear News
The Dukovany nuclear power plant. (Photo: INSP)

Elektrárna Dukovany II (EDU II), a subsidiary of Czech utility ČEZ, has received final bids for the construction of a fifth reactor at the Dukovany plant, as well as nonbinding bids for three additional units to be sited at Dukovany and at Temelín, the Czech Republic’s other nuclear power facility. (Dukovany currently houses four Russian VVER-440/V213 pressurized water reactors, while Temelín is home to two VVER-1000/V320s.)

Westinghouse launches microreactor “accelerator hub”

October 27, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear News
Concept art of the eVinci accelerator hub, soon to be home to engineering and licensing operations, testing, prototype trials, business development, and sales. (Image: Westinghouse)

To help speed up commercialization of its eVinci microreactor, Westinghouse Electric Company this week launched a new design and manufacturing facility for the project near downtown Pittsburgh, Pa. Located in the borough of Etna, the 87,000-square-foot eVinci “accelerator hub” will be home to engineering and licensing operations, testing, prototype trials, business development, and sales, Westinghouse said in an October 24 announcement, adding that the facility will include manufacturing space for producing the “innovative heat pipes that are central to the eVinci technology.”

Three developers get FEEED funding to test microreactors in INL’s DOME

October 25, 2023, 3:01PMNuclear News

The Department of Energy’s National Reactor Innovation Center (NRIC) awarded $3.9 million to three advanced nuclear energy developers on October 23 to design experiments to test microreactor designs in the Demonstration of Microreactor Experiments (DOME) test bed at Idaho National Laboratory.

Rolls-Royce picks Westinghouse for SMR fuel design

October 17, 2023, 3:11PMNuclear News
An aerial shot of the Westinghouse Springfields site, located near Preston, Lancashire, in northwestern England. (Photo: Westinghouse)

Westinghouse has signed a contract with Rolls-Royce SMR to develop a fuel design for the British firm’s small modular reactor program, the companies announced last week.

The design work, to be undertaken in the United Kingdom and the United States, will include associated core components and will be based on an existing Westinghouse pressurized water reactor fuel assembly design.

Implementation of advanced PRIME fuel features

October 17, 2023, 9:42AMNuclear NewsVictoria Fitz, Bradley Balltrip, Matthew Leonard, Matthew Lynch, and Raymond Flanery

Operating costs for nuclear units have grown significantly since the start of the commercial nuclear power industry. For nuclear power generation to remain competitive, process efficiencies and innovations will need to be introduced. The challenge for any change is to improve the safe operation of the nuclear unit. An area of opportunity to reduce operating costs while improving operational safety is through upgraded fuel design and manufacturing. At Southern Nuclear, the pressurized water reactor fuel engineering team worked with Westinghouse to implement the PRIME fuel features, where simple improvements would yield safer operation and long-term cost-savings due to a more robust fuel design. Implementing the PRIME fuel ensures that the operator’s burden from fuel performance is minimized while keeping the reactor unit in a safe operating condition.

U.K. picks six to advance in SMR competition

October 4, 2023, 12:08PMNuclear News

The U.K. government has chosen six companies to participate in the next stage of its small modular reactor competition: EDF, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, Holtec Britain Limited, NuScale Power, Rolls-Royce SMR (the only real home team), and Westinghouse Electric Company UK Limited. According to the government’s October 2 announcement, the advanced technologies offered by these firms are “the most able to deliver operational SMRs by the mid-2030s.”

Vogtle-2 okayed for ATF enriched to 6 percent

October 2, 2023, 7:01AMNuclear News

Southern Nuclear last Friday announced that its Vogtle Unit 2 reactor has become the first U.S. commercial reactor to be authorized by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to use accident tolerant fuel exceeding 5 percent uranium-235 enrichment.

Environmental regulator gives nod to plans for first Polish nuclear plant

September 27, 2023, 4:59PMNuclear News

Poland’s General Directorate for Environmental Protection (GDOŚ) has given its imprimatur to the Central European nation’s plan to build and operate its first nuclear power facility, state-owned utility Polskie Elektrownie Jądrowe announced last Friday.

PEJ, which submitted its environmental impact report for the proposed project to GDOŚ in March 2022, called the decision “a key permit obtained in the investment process, because subsequent administrative approvals, including the decision to determine the location of the investment and the building permit, must comply with the arrangements and conditions contained in the decision on environmental conditions.”

Westinghouse, Bechtel sign consortium agreement for first nuclear plant in Poland

September 26, 2023, 3:45PMNuclear News
At the Bechtel/Westinghouse consortium agreement signing ceremony at the U.S. embassy in Warsaw, were, from left, U.S. ambassador to Poland Mark Brzezinski; Ahmet Tokpinar, general manager of Bechtel’s nuclear power business line; Elias Gedeon, senior vice president for commercial operations at Westinghouse; Mirosław Kowalik, president of Westinghouse Poland; and Anna Łukaszewska-Trzeciakowska, Poland government plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure. (Photo: Bechtel)

Westinghouse Electric Company and engineering, construction, and project management firm Bechtel on September 20 announced the signing of a consortium agreement to partner on the design and construction of Poland’s first nuclear power plant.

Bechtel debuts Warsaw office to support Polish foray into nuclear power

September 19, 2023, 7:00AMNuclear News

Reston, Va.–based Bechtel—the engineering, procurement, construction, and project management firm partnering with Westinghouse to deliver Poland its first nuclear power plant—recently announced the opening of an office in Warsaw to support the project.

Westinghouse pursues AP300 deployment in Ukraine

September 18, 2023, 9:30AMNuclear News
Westinghouse president and CEO Patrick Fragman (seated at left) and Energoatom president Petro Kotin (seated at right) sign an MOU on AP300 deployment in Ukraine. Standing behind Fragman and Kotin is Ukrainian energy minister German Galushchenko. (Photo: Energoatom)

Westinghouse Electric Company and Ukraine’s nuclear operator Energoatom have signed a memorandum of understanding on the development and deployment of the American firm’s AP300 small modular reactor in the Eastern European state.

EDF, JAVYS ink new nuclear pact for Slovakia

September 6, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear News

Pavol Štuller, JAVYS chairman and chief executive officer, on the left, and Vakisasai Ramany, EDF senior vice president in charge of new nuclear development, sign an agreement in Paris.

Slovakia’s state-owned nuclear company JAVYS has announced the signing of a framework cooperation agreement (FCA) with France’s EDF for further cooperation “in the field of nuclear energy and in the implementation of projects aimed at development of large power reactors and small modular reactors.” Currently, the Slovakian nuclear fleet consists of two VVER-440/V213 pressurized water reactors at Bohunice, and two at Mochovce (with two more units on their way).

The signing took place on August 25 during an official visit to Paris by Slovakia’s minister of economy Peter Dovhun.

Westinghouse inks contract to supply VVER-440 fuel in Slovakia

August 28, 2023, 7:01AMNuclear News
Executives from Westinghouse and Slovenské Elektrárne met in the Slovakian capital of Bratislava to sign the agreement to license and supply VVER-440 fuel assemblies. From left are Aziz Dag, senior vice president and managing director of Westinghouse Electric Sweden; Lukáš Maršálek, deputy director for the accounting, finance, and control department of Slovenské Elektrárne; Tarik Choho, Westinghouse president of nuclear fuel; and Branislav Strýček, director general of Slovenske Elektrárne. (Photo: Westinghouse)

In the latest example of Europe’s move away from its dependence on Russia for VVER reactor fuel, Westinghouse Electric Company on Friday signed a long-term agreement with Slovakia’s nuclear power plant operator, Slovenské Elektrárne, to license and supply VVER-440 fuel assemblies.

Vogtle-4 fuel load started

August 18, 2023, 12:58PMNuclear News
The Vogtle-4 reactor cavity in July. (Photo: Georgia Power)

Georgia Power has begun the process of loading fuel into the Vogtle plant’s Unit 4 reactor, the company announced yesterday, marking another pivotal milestone toward commercial operation of the second of the facility’s two new units.