Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom scheduled an auction for 14 April to select a contractor to decommission one of the buildings of Angarsk Electrochemical Plant (AECC) in Irkutsk.

The initial tender price exceeds RUB973 million ($13.2m).

AECC, part of Rosatom’s fuel company TVEL, was established in 1957 to undertake uranium enrichment and conversion. Two buildings (802 and 804) which housed gaseous diffusion uranium enrichment facilities were shut down in 1987 and 1990, after Russia switched to gas centrifuge technology.

In 2007 it was decided to create the world's first International Uranium Enrichment Centre (IUEC) at AECC under the auspices of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Russia proposed creating a guaranteed reserve of low enriched uranium (LEU) to be controlled by the IAEA, which could be used by member states unable to procure LEU from the open market for political reasons.

Conversion activities ceased in 2014 after TVEL in 2011 began implementing a programme to concentrate Russian conversion capacities at the Siberian Chemical Combine (SCC) in Seversk. AECC also has storage for depleted uranium hexafluoride, some of which is sent to Zelenogorsk for processing.

AECC began decommissioning building 804 in 2016 within the framework of the federal target programme "Nuclear and Radiation Safety in 2016-2020 and until 2030" (FTP NRS-2).  

Two general contractors were appointed to undertake the initial work - FSUE "Radon" and JSC UDC PEM with funding from the federal budget.

Work entailed involved building a temporary site for radioactive waste management, creation of access roadds, construction of temporary storage sites for general waste, and the creation of an additional physical protection perimeter.  

Following the April auction, the winner will have to complete the work before 30 November 2022. Among the tasks that the contractor faces are the development of process control cards to confirm acceptability criteria for burial, dismantlement of ventilation outlets, acceptance of building   804/1 from the operating organisation, removal of equipment from conservation, commissioning, and rehabilitation of the territory within the boundaries of the excavated foundation pit buildings 804 and more.

Date: Wednesday, 15 April 2020
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