Duke Engineering & Services’ spent nuclear fuel project in Ukraine achieves major milestone

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Aug. 27, 2001 à‚– A major milestone in the safe storage of spent nuclear fuel at Europe’s largest nuclear power facility was achieved on Aug. 24, 2001, when spent fuel was moved to dry storage at the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant in southeastern Ukraine.

Duke Engineering & Services managed the storage system’s design, construction and licensing.

“This was a first-of-a-kind project, and the technical and political challenges were enormous,” said Duke Engineering President Ron Green. “One of our goals is to be the industry leader in the area of spent fuel management. This project’s success, in addition to our domestic commercial and federal experience, certainly provides the impetus for achieving that goal.”

The project began in June 1994 at a time when power needs in the region were critical and spent fuel storage capacity was running short. Zaporozhye’s six reactors are capable of generating a combined 6,000 megawatts of electricity. Among the project’s many challenges, U.S. engineered systems and hardware had to be adapted to fit a Soviet designed and constructed power plant. In addition, the project team had to contend with language and cultural barriers and a shifting political landscape.

The design and fabrication of equipment, including the vertical, concrete storage containers, was based on U.S. standards with adaptations to satisfy Ukrainian requirements. The delivered equipment is sufficient to safely store a one-year inventory of spent nuclear fuel from one of the six reactors for a period of 50 years. The Ukrainian power authority that operates the plant, Energomatom, will manufacture additional storage containers in Ukraine through a technology transfer agreement. The system may also be used at other nuclear power plants in Ukraine.

Duke Engineering specializes in energy and environmental projects and provides full-scope engineering, technical and professional services to clients around the world. Duke Engineering’s Nuclear Group provides comprehensive design, engineering, procurement, construction management, retrofit, plant life extension, operations support, efficiency management and full life-cycle maintenance services, including spent fuel storage design and management. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.dukeengineering.com.

Duke Energy, a diversified multinational energy company, manages a portfolio of natural gas and electric supply, delivery and trading businessesMore information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.

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