BWXT announces contract for naval nuclear reactor fuel

31 October 2023

BWX Technologies (BWXT) has been awarded a US Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program contract totalling approximately $300m for the manufacture of naval nuclear reactor fuel. BWXT subsidiary Nuclear Fuel Services, based in Erwin, Tennessee, will manufacture and deliver the fuel. BWXT fuel and reactors power the US Navy’s Ohio, Virginia, Seawolf and Los Angeles class submarines, as well as the Nimitz and Ford class aircraft carriers. BWXT fuel and reactors will also power the Navy’s Columbia-class submarines.

When production of fuel is complete, it is shipped to BWXT’s facility near Lynchburg, Virginia for final installation into the naval reactors that BWXT manufactures. The reactors for submarines being developed and built today are designed to last for the life of the ship, and reactors for aircraft carriers are designed to be refuelled only once during the life of the ship.

“BWXT has a trusted relationship with Naval Reactors to provide reliable power for the nuclear navy, and it’s a mission that our company and our employees see as vital for national security,” said Sharon Smoot, president of BWXT Nuclear Operations Group. “Naval Reactors is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, and BWXT remains committed to providing our customer with the highest-quality components and support activities for many years to come.” Work under this contract has already begun, with completion targeted for mid-2025.

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