Westinghouse ready to make SMR fuel in UK

07 January 2016

Westinghouse announced today that its Springfields nuclear fuel fabrication facility in the UK has "reached the requirements necessary" for manufacturing fuel assemblies for its Small Modular Reactor (SMR). Last year the company proposed a partnership with the UK government to deploy SMR technology.

The company said the Springfields plant achieved this "crucial milestone" following a "readiness assessment" based upon fabrication data for two proprietary SMR fuel assemblies produced at its fuel fabrication plant in Columbia, South Carolina, USA.

Westinghouse Springfields managing director Mick Gornall said, "Manufacturing Westinghouse SMR fuel at Springfields will secure the future of a strategic national asset of nuclear fuel manufacturing capability and safeguard highly skilled and paid UK jobs - something that no other SMR technology provider currently offers."

Westinghouse noted this "readiness milestone" was an important part of its proposed partnership with the UK government to deploy SMR technology.

Last October, Westinghouse announced it had presented a "proposal to partner" in phase two of a study being carried out by the UK government into the nation's potential use of SMRs. Phase one - an SMR feasibility study commissioned by the government and carried out by the UK's National Nuclear Laboratory - was published in December 2014.

Westinghouse said that its unsolicited proposal outlines a "shared design and development model" under which the company would contribute its SMR conceptual design and then partner with UK government and industry to complete, license and deploy it. The partnership would be structured as a UK-based enterprise jointly owned by Westinghouse, the UK government and UK industry, the company said.

Westinghouse's SMR design is a 225 MWe integral pressurized water reactor with all primary components located inside the reactor vessel.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News