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North Carolina power agency sells stakes in reactors

29 July 2014

Duke Energy Progress will assume full ownership of the Brunswick and Shearon Harris nuclear power plants as part of a $1.2 billion agreement to buy certain generating assets from North Carolina Eastern Municipal Power Agency (NCEMPA).

The board of directors of both companies have approved the agreement under which Duke will acquire NCEMPA's 18.3% stake in the two-unit Brunswick plant and its 16.2% stake in the single-unit Shearon Harris plant. Together, NCEMPA's ownership interest in these plants totals some 487 MWe of generating capacity. In addition, Duke will buy NCEMPA's stakes in two coal-fired plants, at Mayo and Roxboro, which represent about 209 MWe of generating capacity. NCEMPA's distribution assets are not part of the agreement.

India's Additional Protocol comes into force

29 July 2014

India's Additional Protocol for nuclear safeguards has been brought into force after the country handed over the instrument of ratification to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

US Senate adopts Vietnam agreement

28 July 2014

The US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations has passed legislation approving a 123 agreement on nuclear cooperation with Vietnam.

Reactor restarts would aid Japanese recovery

28 July 2014

The prompt restart of Japan's nuclear power reactors would have "big advantages" for the country's economy and environment, according estimates by the Institute of Energy Economics of Japan.

Thales gets UK control system work

29 July 2014

Torness_(EDF_Energy)_48Thales Group has secured a ten-year, £30 million ($51 million) contract to provide long-term support for computerised control systems at seven of EDF Energy's UK nuclear power plants.

Conditional environmental approval for Kintyre

28 July 2014

Kintyre_(Cameco)_48Western Australia's Environmental Protection Agency has completed its assessment of the proposed Kintyre uranium mine, recommending state approval for the joint Cameco Australia-Mitsubishi Development project. A development decision will rest on future market conditions.

China signs Candu deals with Romania and Argentina

25 July 2014

Two Chinese nuclear utilities have signed agreements that would see them cooperate in the construction and financing of new Candu units at Romania's Cernavoda plant and at Argentina's Atucha plant.

Editorial

Work by the UK's National Nuclear Laboratory to recover americium-241 from the UK's ageing civil plutonium stockpile under a contract with the European Space Agency (ESA) raises some interesting issues, writes Ian Hore-Lacy.

ESA said that it wanted the stuff for radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) – the standard western power source in satellites and other space vehicles such as the Mars rover Curiosity now rambling around that planet. This was interesting, since virtually all RTGs so far are powered by plutonium-238, which has a high heat yield and low gamma radioactivity. Read more...

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Symposium 2014