We bid a fond goodbye to 2019 which will stand out in our company’s annals as a watershed year when we began the implementation of several new ambitious initiatives that will shape our endeavors for decades to come. The first new exciting undertaking is decommissioning of nuclear plants where we now own two reactor units and are on the verge of acquiring four more in the north of the United States. Much of our technology development work in 2019 focused on making decommissioning more palatable to the host communities by the development of ultra-high capacity waste packages to minimize the number of off-site shipments, of the strategies to enable the fuel pool to speedily enter the “cladding fire-free” status and of measures to shrink the facility’s security perimeter. Devising state-of-the-art simulation technologies to improve the shuttered plants’ protection against accidents and threats, and development of palliative technologies to deal with any anomalous used fuel storage system performance were also important components of our development effort in 2019. Our decommissioning organization has worked hard through the year to finalize the Holtec Decommissioning Fleet Management model that is aimed to set our Decommissioning and Dismantlement Program apart as a paragon of excellence reminiscent of our creed, “A generation ahead by design.”
In a signing ceremony in London on December 17, 2019, EDF Energy’s Managing Director of Generation Mr. Matt Sykes hosted the signing of a Long-Term Agreement with Holtec International for the supply of casks and loading campaign services for Sizewell B. With the casks to be supplied under this Agreement, Sizewell B can continue to generate electricity until at least 2035 and EDF Energy can responsibly manage the long-term strategy for spent fuel discharged from Sizewell B.
Project Cheetah, quietly rolled out in 2004, has produced some transformative technologies such as underground canister storage, double wall canister and forced gas dehydration that have made dry storage implementation increasingly more efficient with the storage systems evolving into vanishingly small dose emitters and impregnable fortresses of security. Cheetah-spawned technologies have notched several notable triumphs, such as making it possible to store Chernobyl’s water-logged fuel to Western standards of safety and executing dry storage at the old Humboldt Bay Power Plant (PG&E), which had neither a competent building structure nor a capable cask crane. The invention of METAMIC-HT, which possesses an excellent combination of neutron absorption, thermal and mechanical properties, is another proud achievement of Cheetah. Metamic-HT, a nano-technology product invented by Holtec, is used in the vast majority of Holtec’s casks and canisters.
Holtec International and Entergy Corporation, through their affiliates, have jointly submitted a License Transfer Application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) requesting approval to transfer the NRC licenses for the Indian Point Energy Center to Holtec after the last unit permanently shuts down by April 30, 2021.
Members of Holtec International’s Decommissioning Advisory Board met on October 29, 2019 to assay advances made by the Company in its first year of decommissioning endeavors related to Oyster Creek (formerly Exelon’s) and Pilgrim (formerly Entergy’s) nuclear plants. This board is comprised of noted industry stalwarts representing many of North America’s leading nuclear operators.
We are pleased to announce that a leading architect, engineer and constructor in the United States, has awarded a contract to Holtec International to provide the Company’s patented innovative induced draft air cooled condenser (ACC) system for a power generation project in Elwood, Illinois. The shorthand for Holtec’s induced draft air-cooled condenser system is “HI-KOOL.”
On October 23, in a ceremony attended by the leading lights of the region, the Camden County Police Administration Building was dedicated to Holtec’s Executive Director of Global Security, J. Scott Thomson, who recently retired as the police chief of the Camden County Police Department (CCPD). Thomson was the youngest police chief in the department’s history when appointed in 2008. In, 2013, he oversaw the transition of the city police department into the Camden County police force, which was the first of its kind in modern history of American law enforcement. Within two years, the newly built organization reduced murders by 71% and crime to a 50-year low erasing Camden’s sad moniker as “America’s Most Dangerous City.” Camden’s social rebirth attracted the attention of President Obama who visited the CCPD in 2015 and hailed it as a model. (President Obama’s letter to Scott on his retirement is attached). The CCPD’s accomplishments are featured in the National Law Enforcement Museum in Washington, D.C. Each year, more than 50 police departments from around the world visit CCPD to learn its “secret sauce.”
Holtec International and the New Mexico Building and Construction Trade Council (Council) have agreed to establish a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) to provide workers and craftsmen to construct the HI-STORE Consolidated Interim Storage Facility (CISF) in Lea County, New Mexico. Under the terms of the Commitment Agreement, Holtec will award the construction work for the HI-STORE CISF exclusively to a general contractor who agrees to implement the terms of the PLA.
Success at last! On August 29, 2019, Holtec’s Project team completed the comprehensive pre-commissioning program (also called Cold Tests) for the Chernobyl Interim Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facility (ISF-2) – the world’s largest dry storage installation. Completion of Cold Testing, marked by the demonstration of full functionality of the Facility with no major issues or impediments to licensed operation, was confirmed at the working meeting by the Ukraine’s national nuclear regulator, State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine (SNRIU) on September 6, 2019. ISF-2 will formally enter commissioning once the Operator (Chernobyl NPP) obtains SNRIU’s individual operation license which will initiate the marathon campaign to dismember each of Chernobyl’s 21000-plus fuel assemblies into three parts (two fuel bundles and an activated connecting rod) in a purpose-built Hot Cell and place them in interim dry storage.
Holtec International and Eos Energy Storage (Eos), the developer of Znyth®DC battery systems, announce the formation of HI-POWER, LLC, a multi-gigawatt manufacturing joint venture to mass produce state-of-the-art aqueous zinc batteries for industrial-scale energy storage.