Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) is still aiming to reach its goal of doubling its global nuclear power-related orders by 2014. The company's US subsidiary has announced plans for a new engineering centre in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Mitsubishi Nuclear Energy Systems (MNES) said that the Charlotte Engineering Centre will "expand the company's business in the US market of building new nuclear power plants and supplying replacement components for existing nuclear power plants." It added that the new centre "will be the core of the company's new-build projects in the United States."
The company said that it will invest some $4.1 million in the new facility, which is expected to create 135 jobs over the next five years.
MNES was established by MHI in July 2006 to introduce its US-specific Advanced Pressurized Water Reactor (US-APWR) design to American utilities. The company also provides support for existing nuclear power plants through component replacement – including reactor vessel closure heads, steam generators, control rod drive mechanisms and pressurizers – as well as inspection services.
Luminant is proposing the 1700 MWe APWR design for units 3 and 4 at the Comanche Peak nuclear power plant in Texas, while Dominion plans to use the design for the proposed third unit at the North Anna plant in Virginia.
MHI expects to meet its goal of doubling orders in the nuclear power business in the next few years, despite the accident at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan. The company anticipates nuclear power orders worth ¥600 billion ($7.4 billion) in fiscal 2014, Kyodo News reported.
MHI expects to expand such businesses as replacement of old components overseas and enhancement of security at domestic plants, although executive vice president Shigero Masamori did note, "there are uncertainties in fiscal 2011 and 2012 as we may face risks stemming from the effects of the disaster."
In the fiscal year ended March 2011, the company's nuclear business reported orders worth ¥310 billion ($3.8 billion), up 15% from the previous year. For fiscal 2012, MHI anticipates orders worth ¥400 billion ($5.0 billion).
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News