Sheffield Forgemasters forges deal with BHEL

1 April 2009

UK-based Sheffield Forgemasters has signed a technology transfer agreement with Indian state run power equipment manufacturer Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL). The ten-year agreement is estimated to be worth £30m ($43m) over the next decade.

Under a memorandum of understanding (MoU), signed this week, BHEL will buy the technology and share specialist engineering knowledge with Sheffield Forgemasters. Chief executive at Sheffield Forgemasters, Graham Honeyman, said: “The agreement will see us help build new steel making and forging facilities to manufacture forgings for hydro, nuclear and thermal power generation projects servicing India’s domestic market.”

BHEL currently manufactures forging equipment for the subcritical power plants at its Haridwar plant in Uttarakhand. Sheffield Forgemasters, which is ASME and R-CCM certified has secured orders in the USA and China to supply pump casings for Westinghouse AP1000 reactors. The company is also considering investing £120m ($165m) in a 15,000t forge, melt shop and other machinery so that it can manufacture all of the heavy components required for Areva’s EPR and Westinghouse’s AP1000 reactors.

This latest deal between Sheffield Forgemaster and BHEL follows a number of others since India signed bilateral nuclear cooperation agreements with the USA, France and Russia last year. In February India’s nuclear operator Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) announced deals with Areva, TVEL and its own country’s largest power utility NTPC Limited. Last week GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) signed MoU with NPCIL and BHEL to collaborate on building Advanced Boiling Water Reactors (ABWRs) in India.

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