Ukraine’s Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility (CSFSF), world’s first, is being constructed only a few miles from the site of the Chernobyl accident. The CSFSF, designed for 100-year service life, will receive and store used fuel in a robust confinement system shipped from nine of Ukraine’s reactors. This facility will be a litmus test for the Country’s national nuclear generator, Energoatom, to manage its used fuel safely which is necessary to realize the nation’s ambitions to substantially replace its coal-fired plants with “walk away” safe nuclear reactors.
“Because no petitioner has both demonstrated standing and proffered an admissible contention, this proceeding is terminated” reads the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board (ASLB) Memorandum and Order issued May 7 in the licensing process for the Holtec’s HI-STORE CIS facility (NRC’s press release on this matter is attached). With the hearings hurdle removed, Holtec’s effort to establish the HI-STORE CISF (consolidated interim storage facility) in New Mexico remains on track for licensing in 2020. The license application for the HI-STORE CISF was submitted to the USNRC on March 31, 2017 and was accepted by the Commission in February 2018 (USNRC Docket No. 72-1051).
We are pleased to announce the start of final system-wide trials for Chernobyl’s dry store facility today. These functional dry runs follow a long series of exhaustive tests of the individual systems, structures and components within the spent nuclear fuel processing and storage complex called ISF-2. Over the next two months, we expect to complete stem-to-stern functional demonstrations of the spent fuel handling and storage processes before handing over the facility to Ukraine’s State-owned enterprise Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant (ChNPP). ChNPP will then initiate commissioning of the facility beginning with “hot” confirmatory tests. To be sure, dismembering more than 21,000 RBMK spent fuel assemblies in a special purpose “Hot cell,” packaging those fuel assemblies in double walled canisters (DWCs), and transferring them from (open) water-cooled pools into hermetically sealed rugged helium-filled storage systems inside ventilated modules will mark a huge safety milestone for Ukraine. This project is funded by a group of Western countries and Japan and is administered by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).
We are pleased to announce that Entergy Corp. (NYSE: ETR) has agreed to sell the subsidiaries that own Indian Point Units 1, 2, and 3, located in Buchanan, N.Y., to a Holtec International subsidiary for decommissioning. The sale, which will be effective after Unit 3 has been shut down and permanently defueled, includes the transfer of the licenses, spent fuel, decommissioning liabilities, and Nuclear Decommissioning Trusts (NDT) for the three units.
The BGV Group of Ukraine and Holtec International are pleased to announce their decision to enter into a joint venture to develop Ukraine’s untapped mineral resources by building a range of mining, processing and manufacturing facilities to help accelerate the country’s industrialization. Instead of extracting and exporting minerals, the joint venture envisages using them to make finished products and metal forms such as forgings, castings and extrusions in special purpose processing plants within the country. These plants will offer well-paying jobs to the local work force and help strengthen the country’s industrial economy. Thus, nature’s gifts buried in the land will be extracted to help build a vertically integrated industrial infrastructure that will enable Ukraine to move up the value-added supply chain in world markets. The endeavors of the joint venture are expected to serve a range of industries such as chemical, petrochemical, and energy generation.
The winter meeting of the Holtec Advisory Council for SMR-160, held on February 8, 2019 in Jupiter, Florida, was led by the incoming chairman, Michael Rencheck, CEO of Bruce Power, Canada. The meeting was attended by invited industry experts from several leading organizations, including Bruce Power, Energoatom (Ukraine), Entergy, Exelon Generation, Southern, Talen Energy, NEI, SNC-Lavalin, Mitsubishi Electric, and several major suppliers which constituted a robust review team encompassing virtually all aspects of the SMR-160 program. The international contingent consisted of business and technology leaders from Canada, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine and the United Arab Emirates. The large contingent of participants (over 40) reflected the growing industry enthusiasm for the SMR-160 technology. Several milestone announcements (noted below) at the conference underscored the growing recognition of SMR-160 as a viable contributor to humankind’s drive for carbon-free energy generation.
At Holtec, 2018 will be remembered as the year when the Company’s four-year quest to launch its decommissioning program reached a successful milestone. Three nuclear power plants, including Exelon’s Oyster Creek Generating Station, and Entergy’s Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station and Palisades Nuclear Generating Station, as well as the site of the decommissioned Big Rock Point Nuclear Power Plant near Charlevoix, Michigan, where only the Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (ISFSI) remains, are under purchase/sale agreements to transfer their licenses, spent fuel and Nuclear Decommissioning Trusts to Holtec for accelerated decommissioning subject to U.S. NRC’s concurrence. As of this writing, the U.S. NRC has accepted the License Transfer Applications for these agreements. In another strategic development, Holtec and SNC-Lavalin (Canada) established a joint venture company named Comprehensive Decommissioning International, LLC (CDI) to carry out decommissioning projects around the world. Holtec’s subsidiary, Holtec Decommissioning International (HDI), will hold the Plants’ licenses and manage the Company’s nuclear assets. CDI and HDI are off to a running start, both dedicated to the safe, rapid, and economic decommissioning of shut down nuclear power plants.
RIVNE, UKRAINE, Dec 5, 2018; Representatives from Ukraine’s government, parliament, and various sectors of industry witnessed the culmination of a successful series of tests at the Rivne Nuclear Power Plant (RNPP) that validated the various critical functions of Holtec-supplied equipment and systems for the country’s soon-to-be-operational Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility(CSFSF) (which is known as the “Consolidated Interim Storage Facility”in the United States). The first set of tests included successful verification of the functionality of the (patented) forced helium dehydration system, lift yokes, rail car, etc. – all supplied by Holtec International. The final test involved heavy load handling evolutions demonstrated by handling and maneuvering of the HI-TRAC transfer cask from the rail car to the main reactor hall of RNPP. Photos of various components are shown below.
Camden, December 4, 2018: Speaking to a gathering of nuclear industry professionals, Holtec’s President and CEO, Dr. Kris Singh, called a decent basic wage a fundamental human right and announced that Holtec will celebrate the holiday season by raising the minimum base (standard time) wage for its work force at every one of its US plants to $15 per hour. “This pay raise is a small measure of my appreciation for the hard-working individuals at all Holtec campuses.”
We are pleased to report successful dry storage implementations of both PWR and BWR multi-purpose canisters (MPCs) in HI-STORM vertical ventilated modules at numerous nuclear plant sites, setting new records in their curie content and heat load. Out of the total of 170 HI-STORM systems loaded thus far, 135 have been loaded by Holtec’s own site services group. The total number of Holtec systems loaded globally to date stands at 1235 at this writing. The nuclear units that have increased their dry storage population of HI-STORM vertical ventilated systems (VVMs) in 2018 are (in alphabetical order): Browns Ferry (TVA), Callaway (Ameren), Clinton (Exelon), Comanche Peak (Luminant), Diablo Canyon (PG&E), D.C. Cook (American Electric Power), Farley (Southern Nuclear), Pilgrim (Entergy), SONGS (Southern California Edison), Vermont Yankee (Entergy), Vogtle (Southern Nuclear) and Watts Bar (TVA).