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Major nuclear-decommissioning contract

Posted on 30 Aug 2014 and read 2225 times
nuclear plant

Berkeley nuclear site is currently undergoing decommissioning after 30 years of operational life.

Intermediate-level waste such as fuel-element debris, miscellaneous contaminated items and ‘activated components’ must be retrieved from vaults and other locations on the site, processed and packaged in ductile cast iron containers, then stored prior to final disposal at a Geological Disposal Facility.

The end client is Magnox Ltd, the contractor is Cavendish Nuclear Ltd, and the sub-contractor for two packages of advanced nuclear-waste handling systems is Barnsley-based Qualter Hall (www.qualterhall.co.uk).

For Package 1, the latter is responsible for the design, manufacture, assembly and testing of two vault retrieval support machines and associated equipment to retrieve all waste from three Active Waste Vaults.

Each of these machine includes a winch tower, a remote-control robotic arm with various tools, hydraulic power equipment, control systems and structural steelwork. Package 2 includes three vault shield doors, three load modules, two transfer tunnel modules and three grapple modules.

The picture was taken during a visit to Qualter Hall by all the major stakeholders in the decommissioning project, including representatives from Magnox and Cavendish.

Site director Steve McNally said: “Our aim is to reduce the risk and cost associated with the Magnox programme through innovative approaches to decommissioning.

The bespoke design of the vault retrieval support machines is a great example of this; it has been achieved through integrated working with our supply chain.”