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Argonne National Lab to test liquid metal fast reactors
12 May, 2022
The US Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) said on 10 May that it had added new capabilities to support testing of liquid metal fast reactors. The Thermal Hydraulic Experimental Test Article (THETA) will provide high-resolution and high-quality data that can be used to develop computer codes to support the licensing of liquid-metal fast reactor designs. THETA is currently running its first test with Oklo company, which seeks to better understand the behaviour of its fast reactor designs.

Innovative robotics for radwaste management
05 April, 2022
A robotic-assisted handling system is being developed in the Virero project to categorise and sort radioactive waste components. It is expected to be completed by the end of 2023. By Frank Querfurth and Carsten Demel

West Virginia seeks to end ban on nuclear construction
04 February, 2022
A bill removing the ban on construction of new nuclear power plants in the US state of West Virginia has been approved by both the Senate (by 24 votes to seven on 25 January) and the House of Delegates (by 76 votes to 16 on 31 January). and will now go to the state's governor for signature. The ban has been in place since 1996.

EU draft taxonomy includes nuclear and gas
04 January, 2022
The European Commission (EC) has drawn up a draft plan to label some natural gas and nuclear energy projects as "green" investments provided they satisfy certain conditions.

Keeping a close eye on nuclear waste
11 November, 2021
A new inspection system should increase the speed and effectiveness of visual inspection of waste at Sellafield

Regulating change – the challenge facing US reprocessing
06 October, 2021
As used nuclear fuel continues to pile up in the US, the need to find a solution other than repositories has never been more pressing. Andrew Tunnicliffe speaks with the American Nuclear Society’s Sven Bader and Steven Nesbit about how technology can help address the issue and what regulators need to do now to avert a bigger problem in the future

Russia confirms nuclear as green while EU remains undecided
30 September, 2021
The assignment of the status of a "green" energy source to nuclear power generation in the Russian Federation should be a signal for other countries considering the inclusion of nuclear energy in their "green" lists, Rosatom Director General Alexei Likhachev said on 27 September.

Tokamak Energy demonstrates new magnet technology for fusion power
23 September, 2021
Nuclear fusion developer Tokamak Energy said it has demonstrated a "transformative magnet protection technology" that improves the commercial viability of fusion power plants.

Using robots to clear the Pile Fuel Cladding Silo
02 September, 2021
Cavendish Nuclear and Sellafield have embraced robots in handling legacy intermediate level waste at the Pile Fuel Cladding Silo

UAMPS downsizes NuScale SMR project
27 July, 2021
Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS) said on 19 July that it would reduce the number of small modular reactors (SMRs) it planned to build in Idaho from 12 to six. The project is part of a US Department of Energy (DOE) initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by using nuclear power to complement intermittent renewable energy. DOE in late 2020 awarded the cooperative about $1.4 billion to support development and construction of the commercial reactors at its site in eastern Idaho that includes the Idaho National Laboratory.

The light at the end of the tunnel
14 July, 2021
In May 2001, the proposal to construct a high-level waste repository at Eurajoki near Finland’s Olkiluoto nuclear plant was approved by lawmakers.

MEPS argue for green nuclear
12 July, 2021
Some 86 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have sent a letter to the European Commission (EC) calling on Commissioners "to follow the science" and include nuclear under the EU's Sustainable Finance Taxonomy. The MEPs urge them "to choose the path that their scientific experts have now advised them to take", namely to include nuclear power in the EU's Taxonomy on Sustainable Finance. The letter was organised by Swedish MEP Sara Skyttedal, member of the Swedish Christian Democrats and the European People’s Party, and signed by MEPs from 18 countries across the political spectrum.

Two expert groups report to EC on nuclear’s role in the green taxonomy
06 July, 2021
Two expert groups, tasked by the European Commission (EC) to assess the role of nuclear energy in the green finance taxonomy, published their reports on 2 July.

EU anti-nuclear states urge excluding nuclear from green taxonomy
05 July, 2021
A group of five EU member states led by Germany have sent a letter to the European Commission (EC) asking for nuclear energy to be kept out of the EU’s green finance taxonomy.

Russian scientists develop anti-radiation building materials
20 May, 2021
Russian scientists at the Ural Federal University (UFU) have created samples of clay bricks that are able to attenuate ionising radiation as much as possible - to a level that is safe for the human body, UFU said on 18 May. An article describing the technology was published in the journal Applied Radiation and Isotopes.

Fission reactions increasing at damaged Chernobyl NPP
13 May, 2021
Fission reactions have been reported again in uranium fuel masses buried beneath the reactor hall at unit 4 of the Chernobyl NPP in Ukraine which was destroyed in the 1986 explosion, Science magazine reported on 5 May. Sensors are tracking a rising number of neutrons, a signal of fission, emanating from one sub-reactor room, Anatolii Doroshenko, from the Institute for Nuclear Power Plant Safety (IPBAE) of the Ukraine Academy of Sciences, reported during discussions about dismantling the reactor. “There are many uncertainties,” said IPBAE’s Maxim Saveliev. “But we can’t rule out the possibility of [an] accident.” The neutron counts are rising slowly, Saveliev noted, and there is still time to find a solution to the threat.

Lithuanian Environmental Protection Agency approves reactor dismantling
04 May, 2021
Lithuania’s Ignalina NPP (INPP) said on 29 April that it was preparing for dismantling and decontamination of units А-2 and В-2 (project 2210, phase 1) after it had received approval from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In accordance with clause 2 of part 1 of Article 10 of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Environmental Impact Assessment of a Proposed Economic Activity, the EPA had decided that the proposed economic activity - dismantling and decontamination of blocks A-2 and B-2 would be permitted based on the environmental impact assessment report submitted by INPP.

EC indicates nuclear will be added to EU Taxonomy
22 April, 2021
In a communication on 21 April, the European Commission (EC) effectively made a number of amendments to the EU Taxonomy Regulation, which entered into force in July 2020, signalling the inclusion in the taxonomy of nuclear energy. This followed significant pressure from the nuclear industry and NGOs as well as a report from the EC’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) which found no evidence that nuclear energy does more harm to human health or to the environment than other electricity production technologies already included in the Taxonomy.

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