Westinghouse Electric Company and its eight European consortium partners have achieved a key milestone in the diversification of the nuclear fuel supply in Europe. The consortium has approved the conceptual fuel design for the VVER-440 assemblies, which is an enhanced version of a previous Westinghouse fuel product that was delivered to Loviisa Nuclear Power Plant in Finland from 2001-2007.

“Through this important initiative, we are fueling Europe’s energy security by providing fuel to Russian-designed VVER-440 reactors,” said Aziz Dag, Westinghouse vice president, Northern and Eastern Europe. “Westinghouse is committed to delivering an innovative VVER-440 design that offers customers superior safety and quality, as well as security of supply.”

The next steps include completion of the associated methods and methodology to be applied for the licensing and use of the new fuel design in each of the European countries. All key activities are on time and the program will be completed by October of 2017.

Westinghouse has been leading the project known as European Supply of Safe Nuclear Fuel (ESSANUF) since September 2015. Its partners include VUJE, ÚJV Řež, Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT), National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), NucleoCon, National Science Center Kharkov Institute of Physics and Technology (NSC KIPT), the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission in Karlsruhe (JRC-Karlsruhe) and Enusa Industrias Avanzadas (ENUSA). The program is funded by the European Union’s (EU’s) Euratom Research and Training Programme (2014-2018) which forms part of Horizon 2020 (H2020), the EU’s Research and Innovation program (Grant Agreement 671546).