WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--AREVA Nuclear Materials signed a contract with NorthStar to segment, package and transport to offsite disposal the Vermont Yankee reactor pressure vessel and internal reactor components. The contract formalizes ANM’s support to NorthStar’s plan, announced last November, to acquire Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee (ENVY) and to accelerate the decommissioning and site restoration of Vermont Yankee by decades, subject to receipt of the necessary regulatory approvals.
To segment and dismantle the radioactive reactor internals, still shielded by being underwater inside the reactor pressure vessel, ANM’s trained teams will use a variety of remotely operated underwater tools specifically designed for nuclear decommissioning and proven effective in various projects in the United States and Germany. The segmented reactor parts will then be moved underwater and packaged in shielded radwaste canisters submerged in the reactor pool. Once loaded and capped, the canisters will be lifted from the pool, cleared of all internal water and moisture, externally decontaminated, sealed inside shielded transport casks, and then transported to secure disposal at the Waste Control Specialists (WCS) facility in Texas.
Vermont Yankee's reactor pressure vessel is a large steel cylinder with 5-inch thick walls about as long as a 54-foot semi-truck and trailer, and twice the width of the trailer. After removal of the reactor internals, the vessel segmentation will precisely cut the component into large pieces, each specifically designed in final shape and weight to fulfill regulatory requirements for offsite transport and disposal.
“Our decades of experience decommissioning large nuclear reactors and our proven dismantling technologies provide the certainty required to execute this critical step in the safe and efficient removal of the reactor from the Vermont Yankee site,” said Sam Shakir, ANM president and CEO. “In addition to contracting for this Vermont Yankee work, we are excited about the expanded partnership we are forging with NorthStar in the decommissioning market.”
In February 2017, AREVA Nuclear Materials and NorthStar announced the joint venture Accelerated Decommissioning Partners to acquire and decommission shutdown nuclear reactor facilities and their used fuel. Now, ADP is progressing on completing an agreement by the end of the year to acquire two U.S. reactor sites following shutdown.
ADP combines the core competencies of ANM’s nuclear component dismantling and used fuel management with NorthStar’s extensive demolition and environmental remediation expertise to efficiently complete the final stage of shutdown reactor sites.
AREVA Nuclear Materials, LLC, is part of the global New AREVA company and includes more than 560 employees located at multiple sites across the United States. Learn more at us.areva.com/ANM and @AREVAus.
New AREVA transforms nuclear materials so that they can be used to support the development of society, first and foremost in the field of energy. The group offers products, technologies and services with high added value throughout the entire nuclear fuel cycle, with activities encompassing mining, uranium chemistry, enrichment, used fuel recycling, logistics, decommissioning, and engineering services. New AREVA and its 20,000 employees bring to bear their expertise and their mastery of cutting-edge technology, as well as their permanent search for innovation and their unwavering dedication to safety, to serve their customers worldwide.