Westinghouse part of effort to help secure nuclear fuel for Russian reactors

Nine European partners in an investment group headed by Westinghouse Electric Co. said on Monday that they have received approximately $2.24 million from the European Union (EU) to establish a secure supply of nuclear fuel for Russian-designed reactors.

The funding comes from the Euratom Research and Training Program, part of the EU's Horizon 2020 research and innovation initiative. This specific program, the European Supply of Safe Nuclear Fuel, focuses on developing an alternative supply for pressurized water reactors operating within the EU. A total of 18 of these reactors are operating in the Czech Republic, Finland, Bulgaria, Hungary and Slovakia.

“The decision by the EU to fund this project is significant,” Yves Brachet, Westinghouse's president for the European, Middle East and African Region, said. “It demonstrates that the EU is serious about taking measures to improve its energy security through a diversification of its nuclear fuel sources. Currently, all Russian reactors in the EU have had to rely on Russian nuclear fuel. The project will help to strengthen and secure European supply of this fuel."

The EU operates 131 nuclear power plants, with 60 percent consisting of U.S.- or European-designed reactors made by Westinghouse.

Other groups associated with this project include: VUJE, the Lappeenranta University of Technology of Finland, The National Science Center Kharkov Institute of Physics and Technology of Ukraine and others.

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