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Accelerating UK Nuclear New Build
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  1. Accelerating UK Nuclear New Build Tony Roulstone July 2006

  2. 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?

  3. Background • Three cycles of nuclear build: • Magnox 11 stations 3 GWe 1960 & 70’s • AGR 7 plants 8 GWE 1970 & 80’s • PWR 1 plant 1.2GWe 1990s • 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Nuclear power sites

  8. Generation III+ candidates for UK Candidate systems for UK each based on a successful international design with the latest safety features: • ACR 1000 AECL Canada • AP1000 Westinghouse US • ESBWR GE US • EPR Areva France

  9. 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;

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Conventional site based approach Standard • 8 Reactors 1.2GWe • Capacity constraint - no more than 2 sites at any one time Programme timescale 25 years

  17. An Alternative Modular Design & Off-site • 10 reactors @ 1GWe • No parallel capacity constraints Programme timescale 13 years

  18. Capacity increase

  19. 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.