UK offers £3m for nuclear decommissioning tech

Innovative technologies to decommission the nuclear sector could get a share of £3 million. The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), Sellafield LTD and Innovate UK are offering the funding to companies […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Innovative technologies to decommission the nuclear sector could get a share of £3 million.

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), Sellafield LTD and Innovate UK are offering the funding to companies to help develop methods to more safely, effectively and inexpensively close down nuclear facilities.

Decommissioning is likely to become a larger priority at Sellafield in the next five years as nuclear fuel reprocessing at the site has now come to an end. However, closing it down is estimated to cost around £85 billion.

Applicants should aim to minimise human exposure to radiation, increase productivity and optimise waste treatment and disposal.

They could employ technologies such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, robotics, sensors and data modelling to achieve this.

The funding will be provided under the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) in two phases – the first will help fund plans and business cases.

The businesses with the most promising technologies will progress to a second round of investment to develop and deploy demonstration projects.

The deadline to apply is at noon on the 19th of April, 2017.