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Accelerating UK Nuclear New Build. Tony Roulstone July 2006. Contents. Background; Setting the conditions for success; Why is time important? Challenge for UK industry; Is the answer to the nuclear power gap - Modular design & Off site construction?. Background.

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Accelerating UK Nuclear New Build

Tony Roulstone

July 2006


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Contents

  • Background;

  • Setting the conditions for success;

  • Why is time important?

  • Challenge for UK industry;

  • Is the answer to the nuclear power gap

    - Modular design & Off site construction?


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Background

  • Three cycles of nuclear build:

    • Magnox 11 stations3 GWe1960 & 70’s

    • AGR7 plants 8 GWE1970 & 80’s

    • PWR1 plant1.2GWe1990s

  • Nuclear contribution to UK electricity supply declining from ~25% to ~3% over the period 2000 – 2020 as first Magnox then AGRs close;

  • Energy Reviews:

    • 2002/3 promoted energy saving & wind/wave providing subsidies through supply obligations - 10% renewables.

    • 2005/6 considering fall-off in UK oil & gas, security of supply & how to meet environmental targets.


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Nuclear debate – drivers & inhibitors

Drivers

Inhibitors

Carbon Emissions

Waste disposal

Capital Costs uncertain & large

Energy Security

New Nuclear?

Doubts about Nuclear Safety

Stable & competitive electricity price

Terrorism


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Setting the conditions for success

  • Clear understanding by public of the need for new nuclear;

  • Waste disposal policy;

  • Planning & licensing modernisation;

  • Transitional incentive for nuclear re-start;

  • Clarity on electricity market including use ofcarbon credits.


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UK programme assumptions

  • Nuclear new build programme ‘like with like’ 10GWe;

  • On existing licensed sites - British Energy & NDA ex Magnox;

  • Privately funded & managed;

  • Modern standard foreign plant – one of top 4 Gen III+ designs;

  • Major public enquiry for the first station - with only site specific issues being considered for later stations.


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Nuclear power sites


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Generation III+ candidates for UK

Candidate systems for UK each based on a successful international design with the latest safety features:

  • ACR 1000 AECLCanada

  • AP1000 WestinghouseUS

  • ESBWRGEUS

  • EPRArevaFrance


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ACR 1000 – Atomic Energy of Canada

  • 1000 MWe heavy water reactor derived from successful CANDU design built in Canada, Rumania & China;

  • Cycle efficiency – 36%

  • Capacity factor - 90% based on CANDU-6;

  • Design life - 60 years;

  • Construction cycle – 42 months;

  • Yet to receive safety certification;


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AP1000 - Westinghouse

  • 1GWe simplified passive PWR derived from CE & Westinghouse designs with over 100 reactors in US, Europe & Far East;

  • Cycle efficiency – 33%;

  • Capacity factor - 90% based on PWR family record;

  • Design life - 60 years;

  • Construction cycle – 36 months;

  • US NRC design certificated;

  • Selected by US utilities for NuStart applications made for site licences.


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ESBR - GE

  • 1500 MWe boiling light water reactor evolved from ABWR built in large numbers in US, Sweden & Japan;

  • Cycle efficiency – 36%;

  • Capacity factor - 90% based on ABWR experience;

  • Design life - 60 years;

  • Construction cycle – 45 months;

  • NRC design certification in process;

  • Selected by utilities in US for NuStart.


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EPR - Areva

  • 1600 MWe light water reactor evolved from proven French N4 & German Konvoi designs;

  • Cycle efficiency - 36%;

  • Capacity factor - 92% improving on N4 record;

  • Design life - 60 years;

  • 42 month construction cycle:

  • Designed to EU safety standards;

  • Being built at Olkiluoto in Finland & Flamville in France.


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Why is time important – for Investor?

  • Individual build timescales for stations

  • 2 years delay & 10% cost => +£250m investment

    +15% through life costs

  • 1GWe plant

  • £1bn cost

  • Build time 4 &1 yr


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Why is time important – for HMG?

  • Long timescale of re-starting nuclear build & enquiry ~ 10 years to first electricity;

  • Constrains of capacity & build timescale mean

    • Further 20 years to replace current nuclear capacity i.e. by 2037.

    • Decommissioning of current stations opens up carbon free energy gap lasting many years.


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Challenge for UK industry

  • Previous Gas reactors – too slow and very expensive;

  • Cost overruns on major infrastructure projects – Wembley, West Coast Mainline etc.;

  • Loss of experienced & specialist nuclear engineers;

  • Scale & complexity of programme – multiple stations geographically dispersed, in same time frame.


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Conventional site based approach

Standard

  • 8 Reactors 1.2GWe

  • Capacity constraint - no more than 2 sites at any one time

Programme timescale 25 years


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An Alternative

Modular Design & Off-site

  • 10 reactors @ 1GWe

  • No parallel capacity constraints

Programme timescale 13 years


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Capacity increase


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Facing the issues – discussion topic

  • Could modular build & off site construction be the answer?

    • New plants designed for modular & shorter construction;

    • Take best nuclear construction practice from anywhere in the world – China & Korea?

    • Learn from other major projects using build off site techniques;

    • Factory infrastructure & logistics?

    • Radical programme coordination requirements.


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