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A revised mixed oxide (MOX) fuel utilisation plan, based on the latest operational plan for the Rokkasho Reprocessing Plant and the MOX Fuel Fabrication Plant, has been released by Japan's Federation of Electric Power Companies (FEPC). While only four Japanese reactors have so far been restarted using MOX fuel, FEPC envisages at least 12 units running on the fuel by FY2030. FEPC represents the 11 power companies, comprising nine utilities (excluding Okinawa Electric Power), Japan Atomic Power Company and the Electric Power Development Company (J-Power).

Date: Saturday, 27 February 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Japanese-utilities-revise-MOX-utilisation-plan

The first full refuelling of Russia’s BN-800 fast reactor at unit 4 of the Beloyarsk NPP with only uranium-plutonium mixed oxide (mox) fuel was completed during the recent scheduled maintenance outage, fuel company TVEL (part of Rosatom) announced on 24 February. The unit, which was shut down on 8 January, has been reconnected to the grid and has resumed electricity production. The first 18 serial mox fuel assemblies were loaded into the reactor in January 2020, and another 160 fuel assemblies have now been added to them. Thus, the BN-800 core is now one-third filled with innovative fuel and in future only mox fuel will be loaded into the reactor.

Date: Friday, 26 February 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsrussias-bn-800-refuelled-with-mox-full-mox-core-planned-for-2022-8547796

Russia has loaded about one-third of the reactor core of the BN-800 fast neutron reactor at Beloyarsk-4 with commercial mixed oxide uranium-plutonium (MOX) fuel, state nuclear operator Rosenergoatom said.

Rosenergoatom said the move to MOX fuel at Beloyarsk-4 brings the Russian nuclear industry “one step closer” to its goal of closing the fuel cycle.

It said that for the first time during a planned outrage, which began on 8 January 2021 and concluded this week, only MOX fuel was loaded into the reactor.

Staff loaded 160 MOX fuel assemblies to complement the first 18 which were loaded in January 2020. There are now 178 MOX assemblies from a total of 565 in the reactor core.

Date: Friday, 26 February 2021
Original article: nucnet.org/news/russia-one-step-closer-to-goal-of-closing-nuclear-fuel-cycle-2-4-2021

Unit 4 of the Beloyarsk nuclear power plant, Russia's BN-800 reactor, has been connected to the grid and resumed operations upon completion of scheduled maintenance. For the first time the refuelling has been carried out with uranium-plutonium fuel only.

Date: Thursday, 25 February 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/BN-800-fast-reactor-fully-loaded-with-MOX-fuel

Russia’s Siberian Chemical Combine (SCC), part of Rosatom’s fuel company TVEL, said on 17 February that it had started to install the main equipment at the uranium-plutonium MNUP fuel fabrication / refabrication module under construction at the Experimental Demonstration Energy Complex (ODEK), being built as part of the Proryv (Breakthrough) project. Sites have been completed ready for installation of equipment for the production of pellets of mixed nitride uranium-plutonium fuel. Installation has begun of the main technological equipment in eight sections of the carbothermal synthesis line and the line for the production of nuclear fuel pellets.

Date: Wednesday, 24 February 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsinstallation-of-equipment-begins-at-russias-brest-demonstration-energy-complex-8542612

The Fukushima-Daini nuclear power station in northern Japan. Water overflowed from spent nuclear fuel storage pools at the Fukushima-Daiichi and Fukushima-Daini nuclear power stations operated by Tokyo Electric Power Company following an earthquake that struck off the coast northeastern late on Saturday night.

The pools are at the Unit 5 and 6 reactor buildings at Fukushima-Daiichi, which are being decommissioned, and the Unit 1 reactor building at Fukushima-Daini, which is set to be decommissioned.

According to the Nuclear Regulation Authority, it has been confirmed that no water leaked outside the buildings and cooling of the nuclear fuel at the two Fukushima stations has not been affected.

The International Atomic Energy Agency said it had been informed by the NRA that there was no damage to the two nuclear stations, or to a third at Onagawa, which is to the north of Fukushima in Miyagi prefecture.

Date: Tuesday, 16 February 2021
Original article: nucnet.org/news/regulator-confirms-no-damage-at-nuclear-power-stations-2-1-2021

Orano NPS has found no corrosion concerns or precursor indications of stress corrosion cracking (SCC) in 20-year-old stainless steel canisters in use at three US dry storage facilities for used nuclear fuel. Regulatory inspections of the canisters, all of which were loaded into their horizontal, above-ground NUHOMS storage modules more than 20 years ago, were carried out as part of an ageing management programme to verify the NUHOMS system is performing as designed.

Date: Friday, 12 February 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Orano-completes-ageing-inspections-at-US-dry-stora

The Lithuanian government on 3 February approved a programme for the development of decommissioning of nuclear power facilities and radioactive waste management for 2021–2030, which sets out strategic guidelines for the management of radioactive waste.

Date: Tuesday, 09 February 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newslithuania-approved-ignalina-decommissioning-plan-8500368

Russia’s Mayak Production Association (part of Rosatom) in Ozersk (Chelyabinsk region) announced that it is to build a new vitrification complex for high-level waste (HLW) generated at its radiochemical plant during the reprocessing of used fuel assemblies.

Date: Friday, 05 February 2021
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsrussias-mayak-proceeds-with-decommissioning-remediation-and-modernisation-8494308

With 10 research and innovation actions linked to nuclear, the Strategic Energy Technology Plan is "really stimulating new partnerships" across the 18 SET countries that are participating in them, Rosalinde van der Vlies, 'clean planet' director at the Directorate-General for Research and Innovation at the European Commission, said this week. Speaking in the plenary session of SNETP Forum 2021, she said all EU Member States have "very high standards" in safety, radiation protection and security.

Date: Friday, 05 February 2021
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/ECs-clean-planet-director-presents-role-of-nuclear