Construction starts of Iter Tokamak complex
The first concrete has been poured for the basemat of the Tokamak complex of the Iter fusion reactor project at Cadarache in southern France.
The first concrete is poured for the Tokamak complex (Image: Iter Organization)
Concrete started to be poured at 6.24am on 11 December. Over the following twelve hours, some 820 cubic metres of concrete were poured into the first “plot” of the seismic pit for the Tokamak complex. A total of fifteen plots will be poured over the next six months to complete the 1.5 metres thick B2 slab. In all, 15,000 cubic metres of concrete and 4000 tonnes of reinforcement will be needed for the slab.
“This is the beginning of the B2 basemat slab realization, and as I savour the moment I measure all of the work and effort that it has taken to reach this point.”
The Tokamak complex will house the Iter fusion reactor as well as diagnostic and tritium management systems. It will be 120 metres long and 80 metres in height and width. This is to be supported on anti-seismic bearings which are already in place to support the 23,000 tonne mass of the reactor system.
Leader of Iter’s nuclear buildings section Laurent Patisson said, “We are all very happy and may I say relieved to have reached this important and visible milestone for the Iter project. This is the beginning of the B2 basemat slab realization, and as I savour the moment I measure all of the work and effort that it has taken to reach this point.” He added, “The concrete qualified for the B2 basemat has been the object of particular care, answering to the rigorous requirements of a nuclear facility in terms of stability, water permeability and gas confinement.”
Laurent Schmieder, head of buildings, construction and power supplies at Iter’s European domestic agency, Fusion for Energy (F4E), commented, “The coming years will be challenging because of our tight schedule and high technical requirements. Safety and nuclear security remain our two main commitments and priorities.”
The Iter project is meant to take nuclear fusion research to a new level with the largest ever Tokamak unit, which should be capable of sustaining plasmas that produce 500 MWt for as long as seven minutes. The EU is funding half of the cost while the remainder comes in equal parts from the other partners: China, Japan, India, Russia, South Korea and the USA.
After five years of gradual site preparation, construction was officially authorised in November last year. A contract, worth €500 million ($687 million), was awarded in January to a seven-company consortium called VFR for the construction of some of the buildings on the site, including the central Tokamak complex.
The facility is expected to reach full operation in 2027.
Source: World Nuclear News
Centrica sells three Texas power stations for $685m
Blackstone Group, a global investment and advisory firm, will buy three power plants from Centrica’s North American subsidiary Direct Energy – which the British energy giant bought for £500 million earlier this year.
The units have a combined capacity of 1,295MW and are located in Paris, Bastrop and Mission. Direct Energy will keep the right to buy the power produced by the plants at a certain price for three years.
Source: Energy Live News
Sensonics protecting nuclear power plant in UAE
Condition monitoring specialists SENSONICS are continuing to fly the flag for UK engineering following continued success in securing significant export contracts. In fact, Sensonics are the only British instrumentation manufacturing company involved in the US$30 billion project, the first nuclear power station to be built in the United Arab Emirates. The contract, for over 1,500 protection channels, is for the supply of the highly successful G3 machinery protection system, monitoring the vibration, thrust and speed of the BOP equipment on all four units at the Barakah Power Plant in the UAE.
In the last five years Sensonics has been very successful in reaching out to overseas markets such as China, Korea and India and after a bid process of several years was delighted to be awarded the high profile contract by the Korea Electric Power Corporation.
This major overseas contract is another example of Sensonics’ commitment to developing the most innovative and effective solutions for vibration, position and speed instrumentation for critical machine condition monitoring applications in power generation, petrochemical, paper production and process manufacturing industries around the world.
Source: Sensonics Ltd.
AMEC acquires US-based nuclear services company
AMEC, the international engineering and project management company, today announces that it has agreed to acquire Automated Engineering Services Corp. (AES), a 175-person professional design engineering nuclear services firm based in Naperville, Illinois, US, with annual revenues in excess of $30 million. The consideration of $29 million will be paid in cash and completion is expected by the end of November 2013.
Established over 20 years ago, AES provides plant design / modification engineering, engineering analysis, safety, licensing and regulatory services, and engineering programme support to existing nuclear utilities, primarily in the US.
Tim Gelbar, President of AMEC’s Power & Process business in the Americas said: “Consistent with AMEC’s strategy, this acquisition builds on our nuclear position in the US, allows us to better serve our clients and provides a solid platform from which to achieve further growth. It is an important addition to our strong positions in the nuclear markets in Canada and Europe.
Jim Rippon, Vice President of AMEC’s nuclear business in North America added: “The combination of AMEC and AES increases the value we can add to our clients in the US nuclear market. We are delighted to welcome the AES employees to the AMEC team.”
Dr. A. V. Setlur, President of AES said: “Together with AMEC we can provide a high quality service to our clients. Our focus has always been, and will continue to be, predictable and highly responsive service to our clients.”
Source: Your Nuclear News
F4E Signs Major ITER Contract With French And German Companies
Fusion for Energy (F4E), the organisation responsible for managing Europe’s contribution to International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (Iter), has signed its largest contract to date for the design, supply, installation and commissioning of the mechanical and electrical equipment for the tokamak building complex at Cadarache.
F4E said the contract, signed with a consortium comprising Cofely Axima, Cofely Ineo and Cofely Endel of France’s GDF Suez Group plc and the M+W Group LLC of Germany, is worth approximately 530 million euros (EUR) (728 million US dollars).
The contract is expected to run for six years and covers the design, supply, installation and commissioning of the ventilation, air conditioning and electrical equipment for the tokamak building complex, where the ITER machine will be located. The complex consists of the tokamak, diagnostic and tritium buildings, plus surrounding buildings.
F4E announced last week that it had signed an engineering integrator contract with ASG Superconductors of Italy for ITER’s poloidal field coils. That contract was worth approximately EUR 27.5 million.
Read the full article here http://www.nucnet.org/all-the-news/2013/10/30/f4e-signs-major-iter-contract-with-french-and-german-companies
Source: Nuc Net
Fracking benefits ‘outweigh any minimal impact’
That’s the view of a global commodity analyst at Schneider Electric, who believes Britain should “follow the USA’s lead”, considering the huge influence the unconventional gas source has had across the pond.
He said as long as the industry is “tightly regulated there shouldn’t be so much of a concern”.
The suggestion comes as Greenpeace launched a legal challenge against fracking in England in a bid to halt plans for the controversial method of extracting shale gas from underground rocks, with thousands of people expected to back it.
Shale gas currently makes up nearly half of total US domestic production and has “changed the entire outlook of the market”, suggests Matt Smith (pictured), who is also the author of the online Daily Distillation site for Schneider Electric.
He told ELN: “The impact of lower natural gas prices here has been far reaching from creating more jobs to attracting more manufacturing to the US because it’s cheaper, there’s lower energy costs involved and it’s also being reflected through to people’s utility bills.”
Read the full article here http://www.energylivenews.com/2013/10/28/fracking-benefits-%E2%80%98outweigh-any-minimal-impact%E2%80%99/
Source: Energy Live News