Nets have been installed at the Shenzhen nuclear complex near Hong Kong to keep shrimp from accumulating in the plant's water intake pipes. Last year, the presence of shrimp in the pipes contributed to several "below scale" safety incidents, according to the Nuclear Safety Consultative Committee.
Energy Secretary Rick Perry has requested a study on the US electric grid that will include an inquiry into whether regulatory burdens and environmental policies have forced nuclear and coal plants to shut down prematurely. Nuclear Energy Institute President and CEO Maria Korsnick said the group was happy to see the study being conducted, noting that "nuclear plants produce jobs and tax revenues which the markets ignore."
3D printing has been used to quickly and affordably replace electrical connectors and other non-metallic components at some nuclear plants. The technology could be used in the future to reduce part costs while producing custom components for nuclear plants, writes Brian Schimmoller.
The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico recently received its first low-level nuclear waste shipment since 2014. Nearly 80,000 additional cubic meters of low-level radioactive materials could be sent to WIPP in the coming years, according to an Energy Department report.
Exelon has submitted the decommissioning funding status for 15 nuclear reactors to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, including its Calvert Cliffs nuclear plant in Maryland. "Calvert Cliffs ensures that it complies with all Nuclear Regulatory Commission regulations for the safe and reliable operation of the facility through its operating life and its ultimate shutdown and dismantling," said plant official Mark Flaherty.
Westinghouse Electric Co. has estimated the additional costs to the V.C. Summer nuclear plant's owners for the completion of its two new reactors at about $1.5 billion. Westinghouse told SCE&G that its share of the costs would be approximately $825 million, according to Jimmy Addison, chief financial officer of SCANA.
Nuclear energy will be needed if the EU is to meet its goal of reducing the economy's carbon emissions by over 80% by 2050, according to European nuclear trade organization Foratom. In addition, Foratom said the European Commission's plan to reduce carbon emissions largely through renewables "is in clear contradiction to the goal of achieving decarbonisation in a way that does not endanger the internal market and its integration."
Construction on the planned Jaitapur nuclear plant in India will begin in December 2018 and should be finished by 2027. EDF plans to construct six European Pressurized Reactors at the site, with each reactor contributing 1,600 megawatts of power capacity.
Areva Nuclear Materials, which has joined NorthStar Group Services as a partner for the decommissioning of Entergy's Vermont Yankee nuclear plant, has posted online answers to frequently asked questions about the project. The companies will take steps to ensure safety that include "using the facility's existing barriers, such as performing work inside the containment building, using remotely operated machinery, and additional protection strategies where needed," they said.
Three members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee have urged President Donald Trump to fill vacancies on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission promptly both now and in the future so that a quorum can be maintained. There are currently two vacant NRC seats, with the three remaining commissioners providing the minimum number required for a quorum.