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Final bids due next year and contract with winning technology provider could be finalised in 2024 The Czech Republic is planning at least one new nuclear plant at the Dukovany site. Courtesy ČEZ. France’s EDF, South Korea’s Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) and US-based group Westinghouse Electric have made initial bids to build a new reactor unit at the Czech Republic’s Dukovany nuclear power station, Czech utility ČEZ said today.

ČEZ said Elektrárna Dukovany II, the wholly owned subsidiary set up to implement the new-build project, will now analyse the bids and negotiate with the three bidders. The bidders will then submit final bids by the end of September 2023.

Majority state-owned ČEZ, which launched the Dukovany expansion tender in March, said it expects the contracts to be finalised in 2024.

The initial bids are the basis for clarifying technical and commercial parameters, but not for the actual selection or exclusion of contractors, ČEZ said. 

EDF’s reactor technology is the EPR, KHNP’s the APR-1400 and Westinghouse’s the AP1000. All three reactor types have seen commercial operation or are under construction in different countries.

Two EPRs and four AP1000s are commercially operational in China, while the APR-1400 is operated commercially in South Korea and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). 

Additionally, EPR new build projects are near completion at Olkiluoto in Finland and Flamanville in France, while construction is under way of two EPR units at Hinkley Point C in England. Two APR-1400s are in the commissioning stage and two are operating commercially at Barakah in the UAE.

ČEZ said there has been progress on preparation for the project. In 2019, the environment ministry approved an environmental impact assessment. Last year, Elektrárna Dukovany II received a siting permit from the State Office for Nuclear Safety and a generating facility authorisation from the ministry of industry and trade. The zoning procedure has begun, with the company applying to the building authority in June 2021.

Date: Thursday, 01 December 2022
Original article: nucnet.org/news/three-companies-submit-bids-to-build-new-nuclear-at-dukovany-11-3-2022

The UK is to invest GBP679 million (USD815 million) and become a 50% partner with EDF in the Sizewell C nuclear project. The money "allows for China General Nuclear's exit from the project, including buy-out costs, any tax due and commercial arrangements".

Date: Wednesday, 30 November 2022
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/UK-government-takes-50-stake,-gives-go-ahead-for-S

A large tunnelling machine has begun drilling the sloped spiral ramp of the Beishan Underground Research Laboratory near Jiuquan City in China's Gansu province. The laboratory - in the Gobi Desert - will comprise the spiral ramp, three vertical shafts and horizontal disposal galleries.

Date: Tuesday, 29 November 2022
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Excavation-of-Chinese-underground-lab-begins

Central Asian nation has expressed interest in Moscow’s RITM-200N technology The Kyrgyzstan capital of Bishkek. The Central Asian country says it is interested in Russia’s small modular reactor technology. Kyrgyzstan is looking into the possibility of building its first nuclear power plant, potentially a Russian-supplied small modular reactor, to tackle frequent energy shortages.

The country’s energy ministry signed a cooperation document with a subsidiary of Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom, the ministry said in a statement.

The energy ministry said the document concerns “the preparation of a feasibility study on the construction of a low-power nuclear power plant in Kyrgyzstan”.

The ministry gave no details of what type of reactor technology it is considering or what the schedule for the country’s first commercial nuclear plant might be.

In January Kyrgyzstan expressed an interest in Russia’s progress in developing SMR technology, but said it had not made a decision whether it will push ahead with a project to build one.

Date: Saturday, 26 November 2022
Original article: nucnet.org/news/country-eyes-first-reactor-as-it-signs-nuclear-agreement-with-russia-11-5-2022

“When building a machine as large and as complex as ITER, difficulties and setbacks do not come as surprises - they are an integral part of manufacturing, assembling and installing first-of-a-kind components,” the ITER Organisation said recently.

Date: Friday, 25 November 2022
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsiter-says-essential-key-components-repairs-will-impact-schedule-10381371

China National Nuclear Corp's Southwestern Institute of Physics says that the first piece of the enhanced heat flux first wall for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor has been produced, with its core indicators better than design requirements.

Date: Friday, 25 November 2022
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/China-celebrates-first-enhanced-heat-flux-first-wa

Problems will require in-depth examination and ‘time and budget’ to repair October 2022 file photo of the 30-metre-deep pit in the tokamak building being prepared for the Iter machine itself. Courtesy Iter. Defects have been identified in two key First-of-a-kind tokamak components for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (Iter) nuclear fusion plant under construction at Cadarache in southern France, with the €20bn project facing potential delays while repairs are carried out.

Iter said in a project update that the two components are the vacuum vessel thermal shields and the vacuum vessel sectors.

The issues “demand in-depth examination, creativity in devising corrective actions, and time and budget to repair”, Iter said.

The vacuum vessel thermal shields are actively cooled silver-plated elements, 20 mm thick that contribute to thermally insulating the plant’s superconducting magnet system operating at 4K, or minus 269C.

Date: Thursday, 24 November 2022
Original article: nucnet.org/news/eur20-billion-project-faces-delays-as-defects-found-in-two-key-first-of-a-kind-components-11-3-2022

Powerful explosions shook the area of Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) on the evening of 19 November and the following morning, abruptly ending a period of relative calm at the facility and further underlining the urgent need for measures to help prevent a nuclear accident there, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi said on 20 November.

Date: Wednesday, 23 November 2022
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsshelling-resumes-damaging-zaporizhzhia-npp-while-conflict-also-affects-other-ukrainian-npps-10376039

The ITER Council meeting to review the performance of the ITER Project, evaluated the progress of construction, manufacturing, assembly and commissioning, including the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and supply chain challenges on project progress. The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), under construction in Saint-Paul-lès-Durance in southern France, is a first-of-a-kind global collaboration. Construction of ITER is funded mainly by the European Union (45.6%) with the remainder shared equally by China, India, Japan, Korea, Russia and the USA (9.1% each). However, in practice, the members deliver little monetary contribution to the project, instead providing ‘in-kind’ contributions of components, systems or buildings.

Date: Wednesday, 23 November 2022
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsiter-council-reviews-progress-and-challenges-10376644

The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project has announced defects have been discovered in the thermal shields and vacuum vessel sectors and warned that the consequences on schedule and cost "will not be insignificant".

Date: Wednesday, 23 November 2022
Original article: world-nuclear-news.org/Articles/Defects-found-in-two-key-components-of-ITER-tokama