Iberdrola adds impetus to plan to generate power from nuclear waste

A plan to generate power from the UK’s nuclear waste has received a boost with the news that Iberdrola has signed a memorandum of understanding with GE Hitachi to participate in the PRISM project.

The Spanish utility is to be involved in the building of the 622 MW nuclear plant at Sellafield, which is focused on turning the UK‘s 100 tonnes of plutonium into a metal fuel, a new source of low carbon energy.

PRISM technology differs from the competing proposals for reusing plutonium as MOX fuel or in a CANDU MOX reactor, all of which are currently being considered by the government.
PRISM nuclear project
Earlier this year, the UK’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority decided that converting plutonium to power was a credible option to dealing with nuclear waste ” contrary to its previous statements.

However, the companies must still convince the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) that the PRISM project can provide a reliable and clean source of energy, as well as an effective means of dealing with the UK’s radioactive waste stockpile.

Alfio Vidal, director of Iberdrola Nuclear Generation UK, said PRISM is “an extremely exciting technology”.

“This will not only deliver a viable technology solution for plutonium re-use, it could drive extensive investment in skills and further establish the UK, and West Cumbria, as a global-hub of nuclear expertise,” he said.à‚ 

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