Bulgaria's Kozloduy plant switching to Westinghouse fuel

April 23, 2024, 9:07AMNuclear News
Bulgarian prime minister Dimitar Glavchev, left, and acting energy minister Vladimir Malinov visited Kozloduy nuclear power plant, where Westinghouse is lined up to build two new reactors. (Photo: gov.bg)

Bulgarian officials have approved the transition to Westinghouse fuel at the nation's Kozloduy nuclear power plant, as Bulgaria moves away from its reliance on Russian supplies. The fuel was recently delivered for use in Unit 5.

Vogtle-4 plant in home stretch, connects to grid

March 4, 2024, 12:00PMNuclear News
Southern Nuclear’s Vogtle-4. (Photo: Georgia Power)

Vogtle Unit 4 synchronized and successfully connected to the electric grid on March 1, just two weeks after reaching initial criticality.

This milestone is one of the final steps to completing Southern Nuclear’s long-awaited Vogtle project, adding the second of two large-scale reactors to the United States’ fleet in as many years—the first such additions to that fleet in more than three decades.

Hyundai tops other bidders to build Bulgarian reactors

February 26, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News
Bulgaria’s Kozloduy nuclear power plant. (Photo: Gogo89873)

Bulgaria has shortlisted South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering and Construction team to build new reactors at Kozloduy nuclear power plant.

Of the five international companies to bid on the project, Hyundai E&C was the only one that met the requirements of project company Kozloduy NPP—New Builds Plc. for the commissioning and construction of two new Westinghouse Electric AP1000 reactors, the Bulgarian firm said. Bids were due February 2.

Vogtle-4 hits start-up milestone

February 15, 2024, 9:30AMNuclear News
Vogtle-4, pictured in August 2023. (Photo: Georgia Power)

Georgia Power’s Vogtle-4, located near Waynesboro, Ga., reached initial criticality this week, hitting a major milestone in the start-up of the reactor.

The company announced the news on February 14. Initial criticality demonstrates that operators have safely started the nuclear reactor, or, in other words, the fission reaction within the unit is now self-sustaining and the nuclear reactor is ready to produce heat.

Zeno Power will repurpose legacy radioisotope source from ORNL

January 31, 2024, 12:03PMNuclear News

Zeno Power announced on January 26 that it will get the strontium-90 that it needs to fuel full-scale radioisotope power systems (RPSs) for national security and space exploration missions from the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management (OREM). Under a public-private partnership, a large legacy RPS known as the BUP-500 that had languished, unused, in storage at Oak Ridge National Laboratory has been transported to an unnamed commercial radiological facility in Pennsylvania—Zeno Power’s subcontractor—where the Sr-90 it contains will be repurposed as heat sources for Zeno Power devices.

Ukraine accelerates plans for four new reactors

January 29, 2024, 3:10PMNuclear News
The Khmelnitskiy nuclear power plant, site of Ukraine's planned new reactors. (Photo: RLuts)

Ukraine plans to start construction on four new nuclear plants this summer or fall, the country’s energy minister said in televised remarks today.

The quicker timeline aims to compensate Ukraine for lost energy capacity as its war with Russia continues. Ukraine’s government, however, still needs to sign off on the plans.

“We need vessels,” said energy minister German Galushchenko.

2024: The State of Advanced Reactors

January 19, 2024, 3:07PMNuclear NewsMatt Wald

Designs for high-tech products, and the start-ups that offer them, will always outnumber the commercial successes. Ditto: many more power plants are proposed than actually get built, no matter what the technology.

This is an axiom of free-market economies, but in early November 2023 it became painfully obvious in the advanced reactor field. NuScale Power, the only advanced reactor that has made it through the licensing gauntlet, acknowledged that the consortium of utilities that was its intended launch customer had failed to put together a feasible package.

2023 in Review: April–June

January 11, 2024, 7:00AMNuclear News

Another calendar year has passed. Before heading too far into 2024, let’s look back at what happened in 2023 in the nuclear community. In today's post, compiled from Nuclear News and Nuclear Newswire are what we feel are the top nuclear news stories from April through June 2023.

Stay tuned for the top stories from the rest of the past year.

Reviewing the top nuclear headlines from 2023

January 7, 2024, 10:10AMNuclear News

The new year is here, and so it is time for the Nuclear News review of 2023's top stories. The recap will appear in the January issue of the magazine, on its way to American Nuclear Society members right now. In the meantime, all ANS members can read the year's issues in the ANS member center, and also review some of the most-read stories from Nuclear Newswire below. Here’s to a Happy New Year!

2024 GAIN vouchers will foster seven new advanced reactor technologies

December 23, 2023, 6:01PMNuclear News
A still from a video on Westinghouse Electric Company’s eVinci microreactor, one of seven advanced reactor technologies that received support in GAIN’s latest round of nuclear energy vouchers. (Image: Westinghouse)

The Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear (GAIN) announced December 19 that seven firms will get vouchers to access the nuclear research facilities and expertise of the national laboratory complex in the first round of fiscal year awards. Each company is paired with one or more national laboratories to work on concepts from advanced reactor fueling to fuel recycling to climate forecasting.

The Carolinas-Virginia Tube Reactor

December 22, 2023, 3:00PMNuclear NewsJeremy Hampshire
The Carolinas-Virginia Tube Reactor site, circa 1963. (Photo: Duke Energy)

The Carolinas-Virginia Tube Reactor (CVTR), also known as Parr due to its location in Parr, S.C., was a 65-MWt (17-MWe) pressurized tube reactor. Construction began in January 1960, and the reactor reached initial criticality in March 1963. Commercial operation commenced in December 1963, and the reactor was permanently shut down in January 1967 after the test program was complete.

Southern’s Tom Fanning to retire

December 18, 2023, 3:02PMNuclear News

Fanning

Tom Fanning, Southern Company board executive chairman and the man who helmed the firm during construction of the two new AP1000 reactors at Georgia’s Vogtle nuclear plant, will retire December 31, Southern has announced. His board seat will be filled by Chris Womack, who replaced Fanning as Southern’s president and chief executive officer earlier this year.

Elected by the Southern board in July 2010, Fanning became company president in August 2010 and assumed the additional responsibilities of chairman and CEO that December. During his more than 43 years with Southern, Fanning held executive roles across various business disciplines, including finance, strategy, international business development, and technology. As president, chairman, and CEO of Southern, he received numerous accolades, including being named one of the most influential leaders in the energy industry in the past 25 years.

ANS awarded Fanning a Presidential Citation at this year’s Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, Ind.

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.