Georgia Power's Vogtle nuclear plant expansion project has completed closed vessel testing on Unit 3, a milestone on its path to bringing the reactor online next year. The next step is to conduct cold hydro testing before the initial fuel loading.
Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette briefed the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy about how the department is coping with the coronavirus pandemic and described research underway by National Laboratories to combat the disease. Brouillette also discussed increasing the nation's global nuclear energy leadership role.
Micro-modular reactor firm U-Battery has been selected for the second phase of the Advanced Modular Reactor competition being conducted by the UK's Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. During this phase, U-Battery will use $13 million in government funding to begin AMR design and development work for a reactor the firm hopes to deploy by 2028.
India and the European Union have finalized a civil nuclear cooperation agreement the countries have been working toward for 13 years. The agreement, to be announced during an online summit today, establishes a framework for cooperation on nuclear power generation.
All of Spain's nuclear and radioactive facilities operated safely last year, protecting workers, the population and the environment, according to an annual report from Spain's Nuclear Safety Council. Spain has seven nuclear power plants, which produced 21.43% of the country's power in 2019.
A House Appropriations Committee voted 30-21 to send a spending bill to the House floor that earmarks $27 million for interim nuclear waste storage, but nothing for the Yucca Mountain repository project. An amendment to add funding for Yucca Mountain could be added on the floor, or when the House-Senate conference committee creates the final spending bill.
The new $6.2 million welcome plaza pedestrian entrance at Niagara Falls State Park in New York opens today after the removal of three patches of low-level radioactive waste that had been used as free fill on area construction jobs. The state removed 1,500 tons of material generated by the former Union Carbide and Oldbury Electro-Chemical plants and shipped it by truck to Ohio for disposal.
A plan to allow the International Development Finance Corp. to fund overseas nuclear projects has Democratic lawmakers divided, with some saying the move would "keep US taxpayers on the hook" for the steep financial risks. But Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and Rep. Conor Lamb, D-Pa., say lifting the funding ban would "provide financial alternatives to state-directed nuclear investment offered by countries like China and Russia that may leave developing countries burdened with debt."
The Russian nuclear-powered icebreaker Yamal, commissioned in 1992, has had its two reactors approved for another 50,000 hours of operation, which will add about six years to the reactors' lifetime. The extra time will allow the Yamal to keep operating until Russia completes five of its new next-generation nuclear icebreakers.
The UK's Nuclear Decommissioning Authority plans to take over the removal of nuclear materials from the Dounreay site and make Dounreay Site Restoration Limited a "wholly-owned subsidiary" of NDA. The move by NDA is expected to save hundreds of jobs at the fast reactor complex site.