TVEL to supply Egypt research reactor fuel components

23 November 2022

The agreement between Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plant, part of Russia’s TVEL, and the Egyptian Atomic Energy Agency, is for supplies of low-enriched fuel components for the ETRR-2 research reactor.

ETRR-2 (Image: TVEL)

The products covered by the deal, signed during the Atomexpo 2022 International Forum in Sochi, "include uranium components as well as products made of aluminium alloy and aluminium powder" with the shipment due in 2023. The items are within the framework of a 10-year contract for the supply of nuclear fuel components for the ETRR-2 reactor signed in 2020.

ETRR-2 - located in Inshas, 60 km north-west of Cairo - is an Argentinian-designed 22 MWt research reactor that started up in 1997. According to INVAP, the Argentinian state-owned applied research company that supplied and built the reactor, it is an open pool reactor which uses fuel made of 19.75% enriched uranium alloy. The multipurpose reactor is used for radioisotope production and research on neutron physics, materials science, nuclear fuel and boron neutron capture therapy.

Egypt and Russia have long-established links involving nuclear energy. The El Dabaa nuclear power plant currently being built in Egypt will eventually comprise four VVER-1200 units, like those in operation at the Leningrad and Novovoronezh nuclear power plants in Russia, and the Ostrovets nuclear power plant in Belarus. Unit 1 began construction in July this year and applications to build units 3 and 4 were submitted in January.

Contracts for the plant came into force in 2017, with Russia’s Rosatom not only building the plant, but also supplying nuclear fuel for its entire lifecycle, providing training and support for the first 10 years of its operation and also building a storage facility and containers for storing spent nuclear fuel.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News