Newcleo consults NTS on transport of MOX

18 January 2024

UK-headquartered innovative reactor developer Newcleo has commissioned Nuclear Transport Solutions (NTS) to carry out feasibility studies in several areas of nuclear transport requirements, including for the transport of mixed plutonium-uranium oxide (MOX) fuel.

A cutaway of Newcleo's TL-30 reactor design (Image: Newcleo)

As part of this work, NTS will support Newcleo through investigating packaging solutions for nuclear fuel; physical security for nuclear fuel; and transport routing and asset options.

Newcleo's proposed small modular lead-cooled fast reactors would use MOX fuel. Newcleo is planning a 30 MWe lead-cooled fast neutron test reactor in France in 2030, with a 200 MWe first-of-a-kind commercial unit planned for the UK in 2032.

In June 2022, Newcleo announced it had contracted France's Orano for feasibility studies on the establishment of a MOX production plant.

"I am delighted to embark on these studies with NTS, which will cover a range of nuclear materials that are part of the Newcleo fuel cycle, including MOX fuel," said Andrew Murdoch, Newcleo Managing Director, UK Operations. "Newcleo's MOX fuel manufacturing facilities will be located in France, and movement of MOX fuel to our reactor sites, including those in the UK, will need to be managed to the highest standards of safety and security in line with stringent regulation.

"We look forward to collaborating with NTS and benefitting from their significant expertise as we build a new competitive industrial standard for nuclear in the UK and beyond."

NTS - part of the UK's Nuclear Decommissioning Authority - oversees three specialist nuclear vessels, a fleet of over 100 locomotives, and a 700+ strong team. It operates Direct Rail Services and Pacific Nuclear Transport Limited, which deliver rail and shipping activities.

"Our work in undertaking a number of feasibility studies for Newcleo is a great example of NTS, as specialists in the transportation of nuclear fuel, using our expertise to advise external partners on how best to address their individual transport challenges," said NTS CEO Seth Kybird. "This collaboration will help to support the delivery of energy ambitions both within the UK and overseas."

Researched and written by World Nuclear News