China General Nuclear (CGN) and Ultra Electronics of the UK signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on 28 February to enhance their cooperation in the development of high-integrity instrumentation and control (I&C) systems and sensors for nuclear plants worldwide.

The signing ceremony, at the Civil Nuclear Showcase, hosted by the UK's Department for International Trade, was attended by representatives from the UK government and senior management from both companies.

The MOU covers collaboration on next generation I&C systems including reactor protection and control. Ultra said the agreement will also explore possible collaboration in areas such as engineering support, localised manufacture and testing, through-life support, safety systems and sensors, and lifetime plant performance monitoring.

CGN and Ultra Electronics previously work together on  China’s Ling Ao Phase II NPP and other CGN nuclear power projects. In July 2016, CGN announced that the FirmSys digital I&C system developed by its Beijing CTEC System Engineering Co Ltd subsidiary had passed an independent review by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The IAEA team concluded that FirmSys meets the agency's safety standard requirements. CGN describes the FirmSys system as the "nerve centre" of a nuclear power plant, capable of controlling more than 260 plant systems running nearly 10,000 pieces of equipment and process conditions.