Westinghouse Electric Company announced it has signed a VVER-1000 nuclear fuel licensing contract for the Kozloduy power plant in Bulgaria.
The licensing process is a key safety pre-condition for nuclear fuel delivery. Westinghouse said it has a proven track record in supporting the nuclear licensing process for its fuel design and is committed to completing the licensing process in compliance with the Bulgarian Nuclear Safety Regulatory Agency requirements and local regulations.
Westinghouse VVER-1000 fuel is in operation in six nuclear reactors in Ukraine and has an ongoing licensing process in the Czech Republic at the Temelin VVER-1000 plant. Westinghouse said its latest generation of VVER-1000 fuel assemblies “offers superior fuel economics and outstanding performance, meeting higher safety and quality standards”.
Tarik Choho, Westinghouse President, EMEA Operating Plant Services said: “We are pleased that Kozloduy has once again demonstrated their confidence in Westinghouse’s nuclear fuel performance, an important factor allowing for the safe operation of nuclear reactors. As part of Bulgaria’s energy security and diversification strategy, our global capabilities allow us to offer innovative technologies and the highest level of service, for the entire life cycle of the operating fleet.”
The contract is part of the procedure for licensing an alternative fuel type for Kozloduy 5 and another step in Bulgaria's programme for diversification of fresh nuclear fuel suppliers. In November, Kozloduy NPP said that it had invited Westinghouse Electric Sweden to submit an offer for a €5.6 million ($6.7m) deal to conduct an analysis of an alternative fuel type.
With the new contract “we have taken another important step in implementing the European Energy Security Strategy, part of which is a complete diversification of nuclear supplies and services for all nuclear plants in the European Union", said CEO of Kozloduy NPP Nasko Mihov, at the signing ceremony.
The two operating units at Kozloduy 5&6 are VVER-1000 reactors, currently using fuel produced by Russia’s Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plant, part of the TVEL. In 2019, TVEL signed a contract with Bulgaria’s Kozloduy NPP for fuel supplies until 2025. Euratom approved the new contract after the Bulgarian Ministry of Energy and Kozloduy NPP committed to step-up fuel diversification efforts.
Photo: Kozloduy NPP signs licensing contract for Westinghouse fuel (Credit: Kozloduy NPP)