Next step for design of new UK nuclear plants

Nuclear regulators will today begin the second phase of assessment of the design for two new nuclear power plants in the UK. This is step two of four which regulators […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Nuclear regulators will today begin the second phase of assessment of the design for two new nuclear power plants in the UK.

This is step two of four which regulators must go through before approving Hitachi’s design for reactors at Wylfa in Anglesey and Oldbury in South Gloucestershire. The design is called the UK Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (UK ABWR, pictured).

There’s a deadline of four years from today for these steps to take place, after which Hitachi can hand a site licence application to the Office for Nuclear Regulation and the Environment Agency.

The process known as Generic Design Assessment (GDA) allows the regulators to begin assessing the safety, security, environmental and waste implications of new reactor designs before site-specific proposals are brought forward.

Mark Foy, ONR Deputy Chief Inspector said: “The GDA process enables ONR to undertake a pre-assessment of the safety and security aspects of a reactor design to determine its suitability for use in the UK.”