Westinghouse to supply fuel to Czech Republic's Dukovany

30 March 2023

Westinghouse Electric Company and ČEZ have signed an agreement for the supply of VVER-440 fuel assemblies from next year for the Dukovany nuclear power plant as it switches from Russian-supplied fuel.

Seated left to right: Bohdan Zronek, Tarik Choho and Aziz Dag, Senior Vice President of BWR and VVER Fuel at Westinghouse. Standing David Beneš, Chairman and CEO of ČEZ, left, and Patrick Fragman, CEO of Westinghouse

The agreement follows last year's one to supply the Temelin nuclear power plant. ČEZ decided to find a new fuel supplier for its reactors for security reasons following the start of the Russian war with Ukraine.

Bohdan Zronek, a member of the Board of Directors at ČEZ and Director of the Nuclear Energy Division, said: "Our focus is not only the safety of our nuclear power plants, but also the energy safety of the entire Czech Republic. That's why the contract with Westinghouse is very important. Thanks to the widening of the number of possible suppliers, we are strengthening our energy independence and the certainty of further operation of our sources."

Tarik Choho, President, Westinghouse Nuclear Fuel, said: "We are grateful for ČEZ Group’s confidence in Westinghouse and remain fully committed to supporting its policy of supply diversification. We are proud to be the first Western alternative with a proven fuel design for this type of unit."

ČEZ said that Dukovany has a three year supply of fuel in storage and it will continue to maintain this reserve in the future. In February, ČEZ said Dukovany, which has four VVER-440 units and is in the Vysočina Region, would be switching to 16-month fuel cycles.

The Czech Republic uses nuclear power for 34% of its electricity, generating this from four reactors at Dukovany and two at Temelin. ČEZ is currently evaluating bids from Westinghouse, EDF and Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power for the construction of a new reactor at Dukovany. An area has also been designated near Temelin, the South Bohemia Nuclear Park, for small modular reactors to operate in the early 2030s.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News