Urenco to expand capacity at Dutch facility

14 December 2023

Uranium enrichment services provider Urenco has announced plans to increase capacity at its plant in Almelo in the Netherlands by 15% in response to new commitments from customers.

The Almelo plant (Image: Urenco)

The project will see multiple new centrifuge cascades added to an existing plant in Almelo, adding about 750 tonnes of SWU per year. The first new cascades are scheduled to come online around 2027.

Urenco noted this is the third major investment to be approved under its capacity programme to strengthen the nuclear fuel supply chain worldwide.

Earlier this year, Urenco approved its first expansion project at its plant in Eunice, New Mexico - the only operating commercial uranium enrichment facility in North America - providing an additional capacity of 700 tonnes of SWU per year. The first new cascades are due online in 2025. The plant currently has a production capacity of 4600 tSWU per year.

At its site in Gronau, Germany, the company is re-fitting an existing space with more modern centrifuge technology which will enhance the capacity of the plant.

Urenco said the capacity programme is a long-term plan to meet increasing customer demand as more countries and utility companies turn to nuclear for the first time, or seek to extend and/or diversify fuel supplies for existing nuclear operations.

"Urenco is committed to the clean energy transition and supporting customers with their energy security needs," CEO Boris Schucht said. "Our latest expansion is our largest so far, coming as a result of the growing momentum behind nuclear energy which was further evident at the recent COP28 in Dubai where both a ministerial and industrial commitment were signed by governments and companies.

"We take the needs of the market incredibly seriously and will announce further investment decisions where required across our enrichment sites."

In addition to the Almelo, Eunice and Gronau plant, Urenco also operates an enrichment facility at Capenhurst in the UK.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News