Urenco has approved an investment to expand enrichment capacity at its facility in the Netherlands. Multiple new centrifuge cascades will be added to Urenco’s plant in Almelo – the third major investment to be approved under Urenco’s capacity programme to strengthen the nuclear fuel supply chain worldwide. 

“Urenco is committed to the clean energy transition and supporting customers with their energy security needs,” said CEO Boris Schucht. “Our latest expansion is our largest so far, coming as a result of the growing momentum behind nuclear energy which was further evident at the recent COP28 in Dubai where both a ministerial and industrial commitment were signed by governments and companies.” He added: “We take the needs of the market incredibly seriously and will announce further investment decisions where required across our enrichment sites.”

Urenco said the capacity programme is a long-term plan to meet increasing customer demand as more countries and utility companies turn to nuclear for the first time, or seek to extend and/or diversify fuel supplies for existing nuclear operations. The expansion at Almelo will provide an additional capacity of around 750 tonnes of SWU (separative work units) a year, a 15% increase at Urenco Nederland (UNL), with the first new cascades coming online around 2027.

Urenco, earlier this year, approved its first expansion project at its US site in New Mexico, providing an additional capacity of 700 tonnes of SWU a year. At the site in Gronau, Germany, Urenco is re-fitting an existing space with more modern centrifuge technology which will enhance the capacity of the plant.

Image: The Almelo facility (courtesy of Urenco)