Summer Issue 2016 |

The magazine for our global nuclear customers



Amec Foster Wheeler steps up to new role at world’s most

ambitious energy project




EDF’s Andy Goddard

on life extensions for

the UK’s AGR fleet

Page 10

Amec Foster Wheeler is

uniquely placed for North

Sea decommissioning

Page 18

Nuclear corrosion

expert honoured with

top award

Page 22

Summer Issue 2016 |

The magazine for our global nuclear customers


EDF’s Andy Goddard

on life extensions for

the UK’s AGR fleet

Page 10

Performance People

Amec Foster Wheeler is Nuclear corrosion

uniquely placed for North expert honoured with

Sea decommissioning top award

Page 18

Page 22



SIAL trial marks growing role at Fukushima 03

Radiating confidence in world-class facility 04

Subs advice for MOD 04

New CEO for Amec Foster Wheeler 04

Putting it all together to make fusion happen 05

Stepping stone to new world of energy 05

20 years of support to ITER 05

First UK member of ETSON 06

Praise for key report on radioactive waste 06

Agreement signed with Chinese reactor builder 06

Statistics have extreme value for Candu operators 07

Research contracts to tackle decom challenge 08

US nuclear plants seek bold ways to cut costs 08

Port Granby clean up gets under way 09



A win-win for EDF Energy and its suppliers 10

On track – nuclear’s answer to the Olympics 12

Tom’s the man to bring industry’s image up to date 14


Nuclear first on Wylfa’s last day 15

Innovation that stops money going to waste 16

Decommissioning: Nuclear and the North Sea 18

Making Chernobyl safe 20

Romania: land of opportunity 21


Masters success for Clean Energy’s part-time students 22

Medal honours David’s work on nuclear corrosion 22

Nuclear exam success for HVEC team 23

MELCOR is this year’s model for fusion 23



Amec Foster Wheeler steps up to new role at world’s most

ambitious energy project

Cover photo: ITER’s Assembly Building,

where the largest tokamak components will

be pre-assembled before their installation,

towers over construction work on the

Diagnostic Building. See page 5.

Credit © ITER Organization,

10 14

Editorial contacts


Steve Brauner


t: +44 (0)1565 684462

Karen Winward


t: +44 (0)1565 683046

If you would like an electronic copy of this magazine

please email

FACT: Amec Foster Wheeler delivered £715m of efficiency

savings at Sellafield as part of the Nuclear Management

Partners parent body organisation.



SIAL trial marks growing

role at Fukushima

used successfully in commercial power

stations in Europe. Fuji believes it has

great potential and wishes to spread this

technology in Japan together with Amec

Foster Wheeler.”

Fukushima Daiichi NPP as it

looked before the tsunami

Amec Foster Wheeler’s innovative proprietary

technology is being used in a research and

development programme at Fukushima, Japan.


he work, carried out in partnership

with Fuji Electric on behalf of the

Japan Atomic Energy Agency,

centres on the SIAL® matrix, a specialised

geopolymer technique for encapsulating

various radioactive waste streams and

making them safer.

The research will test whether SIAL® can

be used to solidify sludge arising from

the damage at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear

power plant caused by the earthquake and

resulting tsunami in March 2011.

Andy White, Vice President for

Decommissioning at Amec Foster

Wheeler’s Clean Energy Europe business,

said: “The SIAL® technique can be used

on low, intermediate and higher-level

radioactive wastes. As a geopolymer,

it is superior to cement because it can

“It is an important

development that Amec

Foster Wheeler has

joined those supporting

the restoration of

Fukushima Daiichi”


incorporate significantly more waste into

the matrix, thus saving disposal costs.

The physical characteristics of the final

product means it performs better in terms

of compressive strength and leachability.”

Hiroshi Ozaki, General Manager of the

Nuclear Power Engineering Department of

Fuji Electric, said: “SIAL® has already been

Amec Foster Wheeler has also been

carrying out a major study into managing

radioactive waste at Fukushima on behalf

of Japan’s nuclear decommissioning

organisation. The work will assist the

Nuclear Damage Compensation and

Decommissioning Facilitation Corporation

(NDF) to develop a long-term waste

management strategy for the site.

Kazuyuki Kato, Managing Director of NDF,

said: “It is an important development

that Amec Foster Wheeler, one of the

UK’s leading organisations for waste

management, has joined those who are

supporting the restoration of Fukushima


Amec Foster Wheeler’s specialist project

team has been asked to identify practical

planning tools to support the future

development of a waste management

strategy for NDF at Fukushima, design

case studies to demonstrate how the

tools can be applied to deliver the best

practicable environmental option for

dealing with radioactive waste, and run

workshops based on these case studies

to provide NDF staff with hands-on,

practical training.

To find out more:


Radiating confidence

in world-class facility

How will the electronic devices in satellites and

telescopes perform when they are bombarded

by radiation in outer space?


hen industry asks that

question, part of the answer

can be found at Amec Foster

Wheeler’s cobalt-60 gamma irradiation

facility at Harwell in the UK. This work has

developed from the facility’s core business,

which is to irradiate samples and

components for the nuclear industry

and provide world-class consultancy

on the effects of radiation.

Paul Murray, Operations Director, said:

“Customers come to us because of our

knowledge and experience, which has

led to international accreditation in the

field of irradiation effects in polymers for

organisations such as the International

Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the

International Atomic Energy Agency.

“Our staff also play an important part in

developing test standards for IEC and

also in writing technical documentation,

providing lecture courses and participating

in coordinated research programmes.”

Samples can be irradiated in many

environments: in water, at high

temperatures, under vacuum, under

different gaseous environments,

in corrosive liquids and in different

combinations. This almost universal

gamma radiation capability is not always

available elsewhere.

“We help our customers

get more from their

high-value assets by

improving design,

increasing output,

extending asset life

and demonstrating safe



In addition, samples can be monitored

during irradiation to continuously

measure pressure, temperature, pH,

corrosion potentials, other transducer

outputs and electronic signals such as

camera images.

To find out more:

Subs advice

for MOD


he UK Ministry of Defence has

appointed Amec Foster Wheeler

to supply independent nuclear

propulsion safety and technical advice

for the Royal Navy’s submarine flotilla.

The Nuclear Propulsion Independent

Advice and Assessment contract, which

was awarded after a competitive tender,

is expected to be worth around £75m

over five years. The work will be

delivered by a specialist team from

within Amec Foster Wheeler.

Clive White, President of Amec Foster

Wheeler’s Clean Energy Europe

business, said: “This contract

consolidates Amec Foster Wheeler’s

position as the largest provider of

independent safety assurance in the

UK nuclear sector.

“We will safeguard this vital and highly

specialised resource and the suitably

qualified and experienced people

needed to sustain it.”

New CEO for

Amec Foster Wheeler


r Jonathan Lewis became Chief Executive Officer of Amec Foster Wheeler on

1 June 2016. He joined from Halliburton Company Inc where he led the largest

division, Completion and Production.

Before starting work with Halliburton in 1996, Jon spent nine years in academia. He was

NERC research fellow at the Royal School of Mines, Imperial College London, and Conoco

Lecturer in Petroleum Geology at Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh.


Putting it all together

to make fusion happen

Stepping stone

to new world

of energy

ITER is the crucial step between

today’s fusion research and the fusion

power stations of the future. Its aim

is to prove that nuclear fusion – the same

general process that powers the sun –

can be a viable source of almost limitless,

carbon-free energy. Inside ITER’s reactor,

intense magnetic fields will trap

deuterium and tritium nuclei in a huge

doughnut-shaped vacuum chamber.

Construction work at ITER

Credit © ITER Organization,

MOMENTUM, a joint venture led by Amec

Foster Wheeler, is to play a key role in ITER,

the world’s largest nuclear fusion research


As pairs of deuterium and tritium nuclei

fuse in a self-sustaining ultrahot plasma,

they will release energetic neutrons and

produce 10 times as much energy as was

needed to heat them up.

20 years of

support to ITER


he British-French-Korean JV,

whose other partners are

Assystem Engineering and

Operation Services and KEPCO

Engineering and Construction Company,

has been awarded the construction

management-as-agent (CMA) contract.

The long-term contract, covering

management and coordination of

assembly and installation works at ITER’s

experimental reactor in the South of

France, is expected to continue into the


Clive White, President of Amec Foster

Wheeler’s Clean Energy Europe business,

said: “MOMENTUM was formed

specifically to meet the challenge

represented by the scope of work at ITER.

Its partners bring a proven track record of

delivering complex construction projects

in diverse industries.

“For Amec Foster Wheeler, this important

contract underlines our key role in

developing future nuclear technologies

while continuing to support the existing

nuclear fission power industry.

“The MOMENTUM partners will embed a

can-do project culture that is focused on

safety, quality and maintaining schedule

and costs.”

As CMA contractor, MOMENTUM will

manage and coordinate the assembly of

more than one million components for the

ITER reactor. At its centre is the world’s

largest tokamak, an experimental machine

designed to harness the energy of fusion,

the nuclear reaction that powers the sun.

The scope includes contract management,

configuration management, project

management, construction preparation,

site coordination, works supervision,

and activities leading up to mechanical

completion. The contract does not cover

design or fabrication of components,

construction of the buildings or building



mec Foster Wheeler has played an

important part in the ITER project

for over 20 years, including a

crucial role in creating materials capable

of withstanding the temperatures inside

the vacuum vessel that houses the fusion

reaction. Our experts have also introduced

innovations into the test blanket modules,

which produce tritium to fuel the reaction.

Under a €70m contract announced last

year, Amec Foster Wheeler is leading

an alliance of companies to design,

manufacture, factory test, deliver and

commission the robotic systems for ITER’s

neutral beam, which heats up the plasma

for the fusion reaction.

These complex machines, each the size of

a bus, must be maintained, repaired and

replaced completely remotely. Earlier this

year, ITER announced that Amec Foster

Wheeler had won a €4m contract to

supply maintenance and remote handling



First UK

member of


Amec Foster Wheeler’s position

as a leader in nuclear regulatory

support has been confirmed by

its successful application to become the

first UK-based member of the European

Technical Safety Organisation Network


This honour recognises the company’s

successful delivery of high quality,

independent support to the UK

regulatory community over many


Amec Foster Wheeler’s independent

Regulatory Support Directorate team

joins counterparts from 10 European

countries in ETSON, which is dedicated

to developing and promoting best

practices in nuclear safety assessment.

Benoit De Boeck, President of ETSON

and General Manager of Belgium’s

Bel V, said: “Amec Foster Wheeler’s

independent regulatory team has a

great pedigree in the nuclear industry

and lives by the values of ETSON.

We are pleased to welcome the

company as the first UK member.”

Praise for key

report on

radioactive waste

A key customer has praised Clean Energy’s

work to support plans for geological disposal

of the UK’s radioactive waste.


mec Foster Wheeler staff at

Harwell and Birchwood, with help

from Quintessa and Lawrence

Johnson Consulting, worked with

Radioactive Waste Management Limited

(RWM) to produce an updated Waste

Package Evolution Status Report as part of

RWM’s Disposal System Safety Case suite

of documents.

The report provides important data on how

packages of waste are likely to change over

time and helps to inform decisions about

how they should be handled.

Dr Cristiano Padovani, RWM’s Senior

Research Manager responsible for the

delivery of the work, thanked the team

for ‘a very substantial effort’.

He added: “I wanted to really express my

gratitude for helping me get it done in time

and to an excellent quality.”

Mark Cowper, Head of Profession for

Waste and Environmental, said: “This was

an RWM company milestone delivered by

our team to time and quality and we have

received some good feedback.”

RWM, a subsidiary of the Nuclear

Decommissioning Authority, is tasked

with delivering a geological disposal facility

and to optimise the management of higher

activity waste.

Agreement signed with Chinese reactor builder


mec Foster Wheeler has signed a wide-ranging agreement

with nuclear power plant constructor China Nuclear

Engineering & Construction (Group) Corporation (CNEC).

The two companies have confirmed a memorandum of

understanding covering potential collaboration in the nuclear

industry. It is the first time CNEC has agreed to collaborate

with a global engineering consultancy on the deployment of

high-temperature reactors in the UK and internationally.

Under the agreement, signed in Beijing, Amec Foster Wheeler and

CNEC have committed themselves to work together to develop

opportunities in nuclear power development, construction,

operation and decommissioning projects globally.

The signing ceremony

in Beijing



Bruce Power in Ontario

Statistics have extreme value

for Candu operators

Work by Amec Foster Wheeler Nuclear Canada has contributed to savings

worth several hundred million Canadian dollars at Ontario Power Generation’s

Darlington and Pickering power stations.


hat is how much the operators

stood to lose between 2005 and

2020 had the Candu reactors

been derated and their generating capacity

reduced because of safety considerations.

Regulators may impose capacity limits to

preserve safety margins on units where

ageing of the primary heat transport

systems has called into question the

effectiveness of the Neutron Overpower

Protection (NOP), a safety system, in

protecting the core against a potential loss

of regulation. Amec Foster Wheeler’s experts

played a key role in the development

and application of a new methodology

for evaluating NOP trip setpoints –

operating thresholds which trigger

automatic shutdown of the reactor when

they are exceeded following a reactor

upset. In conventional NOP methodology,

Monte Carlo simulations are used to

establish a trip setpoint conservatively

so that there is a very high certainty of

providing protection.

But Amec Foster Wheeler applied an

extreme value statistics approach to

estimate the random process and

modelling errors in these computations

and define the trip setpoints more

accurately. This permits a higher value

for the setpoint that will provide

operating margin while ensuring that

safety is maintained with high confidence.

Amec Foster Wheeler’s work was also

instrumental in convincing the Canadian

Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) to

accept the enhanced NOP methodology.

The CNSC has allowed its use by OPG and

Bruce Power on an interim basis for the

past 10 years and has now finally

accepted it. OPG said: “This is a major

achievement that helps avoid unnecessary

derating of Candu units due to reactor


“OPG acknowledges that this acceptance

would not have been possible without the

great contributions and excellent

continuous support provided by Amec

Foster Wheeler staff on numerous

occasions since the early 2000s.

The company said its ‘deepest thanks’

went in particular to three Nuclear Canada

employees: Paul Sermer, Senior Technical

Expert; Michael Levine, Technical Expert;

and Ismail Cheng, Senior Technical Adviser,

for their ‘excellent technical support and


To find out more:



contracts to

tackle decom



he UK’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority

(NDA) has awarded Amec Foster Wheeler

two framework contracts to provide

innovative solutions to some of its technical

challenges. The awards under the NDA’s Direct

Research Portfolio (DRP) are divided into two, the

first (Lot B) covering integrated waste management

and site remediation; and the second (Lot C)

covering spent fuel and nuclear materials.

The research and development frameworks are part

of an overall package worth up to £12m and are

being shared by 10 consortia, including two led

by Amec Foster Wheeler.

Andy White, Vice President for Decommissioning at

Amec Foster Wheeler, said: “These awards deal with

some of the industry’s biggest technical challenges

and position us at the vanguard of innovation.

The awards also enhance and further hone our

expertise and put it at the service of the NDA.”

US nuclear plants

seek bold ways

to optimise and

cut costs

Fracking has helped to create a glut of natural

gas in the USA, pushing energy prices

down. At the same time, growth in electricity

demand remains sluggish.

These two factors alone

would create tough trading

conditions for nuclear power

plants. But the industry’s

problems are compounded by

its own rising costs.

At just over US$36 per megawatt

hour, nuclear generation is 28%

more expensive compared with 12

years ago. The US nuclear industry

has realised that it has to respond

by becoming more efficient while

ensuring that safety remains its top


A new initiative called Delivering

the Nuclear Promise was launched

last December, coordinated by the

Nuclear Energy Institute and the

Institute of Nuclear Power

Operations, and involving utilities

and US industry suppliers.

The target is to cut costs by 30%

while also lobbying for regulatory

changes and market reforms that

will value the unrecognized benefits

of nuclear, such as its contribution

to fighting climate change.

Amec Foster Wheeler Nuclear is

active in many of the areas where

the industry is seeking to become

more efficient. The initiative

scheduled to be completed by 2018.

To find out more:

Yvonne Morris, the Nuclear Decommissioning

Authority’s Research Manager, said: “Overall we

were delighted with the high quality of the

submissions and look forward to working with the

organisations on our strategic R&D programme.

We now have new multi-supplier contracts aligned

with our key strategic themes. With many new

organisations involved for the first time we will have

broad input into addressing our R&D requirements.”



Port Granby clean up

gets under way

Amec Foster Wheeler and joint venture partner CB&I have begun

work as prime contractor on the Port Granby low level radioactive

waste management facility in Southeast Clarington, Ontario, Canada.

The project will enable the safe

relocation of 450,000 cubic

metres of historic low-level waste

away from the receding Lake Ontario

shoreline for safe, long-term storage. An

engineered above-ground mound facility

is being built approximately 700 metres

north of the lake.

In July 2015, Amec Foster Wheeler and

CB&I were awarded a Cdn$86.8m contract

to undertake the Port Granby Project on

behalf of the PHAI. As prime contractor,

the scope includes facility construction,

waste excavation, construction of a

roadway to permit transportation of

the excavated material without using

municipal roads, and restoration of the

existing and new facility sites. Historic

low-level radioactive waste is found in the

area as a result of radium and uranium

refining which was carried out between the

1930s and the 1980s by state-owned and

private companies.

Scott Anderson, Senior Vice President,

Construction Remediation for Amec

Foster Wheeler and joint venture

chairman, said: “Our team plays an

important role addressing this

long-standing environmental issue safely

by delivering this project to our customer’s

requirements, while also supporting the

community with economic opportunities.”

Craig Hebert, PHAI General Manager,

added: “Our contractor brings extensive

international expertise to environmental

projects such as this, and the PHAI has

assembled a strong team to oversee the

work with safety and environmental

protection as our top priorities.”

Pictured at a shovel turning ceremony

to mark the start of work are (l-r):

Scott Anderson, Chairman Amec Foster

Wheeler - CB&I Joint Venture; Richard

Sexton, Acting Chief Transition Officer/

Vice-President, Decommissioning & Waste

Management Oversight; Mayor Adrian

Foster, Municipality of Clarington; Kim

Rudd MP, Parliamentary Secretary to

the Minister of Natural Resources; Mark

Lesinski, CNL President & CEO; Craig

Hebert, PHAI GM; and Wendy Partner,

Clarington Ward 4 Councillor.

To find out more:


A win-win for

EDF Energy and

its suppliers

EDF’s Andy Goddard describes the

background to life extensions at

Hartlepool, Heysham 1 and 2 and Torness

In 2015, total output from the UK’s

advanced gas-cooled reactors was the

highest for 10 years and a remarkable

50% up on 2008, when EDF acquired

British Energy. Safety performance was

the best ever with zero reportable nuclear

events, while the number of unplanned

outages was more than 50% down on the

year before.

The life extensions were a triumph

for EDF and its partners in the supply

chain, including Amec Foster Wheeler,

which played a big part in providing the

technical and safety reviews on which the

life extension projections were based.

Andy Goddard, EDF Energy’s Head of

Design Authority, said: “With Amec Foster

Wheeler in particular, we have a long

history; the company and its predecessors

have been involved in the AGR fleet since

design, build and commissioning and have

supported the stations during operation.

As a result, Amec Foster Wheeler have a lot

of site-specific technical and safety case


“The rigs and labs that Amec Foster

Wheeler maintain on our behalf are a key

aspect of our operations, both in terms of

their use on specific projects and also in

supporting our lifetime requirements, such

as monitoring the boilers and cores of the


This deep knowledge and practical

involvement means that we are involved

in everything from periodic safety reviews,

safety case updates and probabilistic

safety assessments, to planning projects

and developing novel engineering solutions

at the stations. Recently, Amec Foster

Wheeler has provided human factors

support for the Sizewell B dry fuel store,

as well as assistance with remote

handling and robotics to assess the

condition of boilers in the AGR fleet as

part of the BLIMP project.

Our support goes beyond helping to

maintain the physical assets, however.

“We need to ensure that we can maintain

the technical skills and capability that are

needed to underpin the AGR lifetimes.

Some of those capabilities are with

partners like Amec Foster Wheeler,”

says Andy.

He describes the Lifetime Agreement,

signed between EDF Energy and Amec

Foster Wheeler in late 2015, as an

important framework to ensure that the

ambitions of both companies are aligned.

Through this agreement, the need to

maintain a lifetime capability in some key

skill areas is recognised.

Andy also highlights that EDF Energy

has been working with the Technical

Work on the transformers

during an outage at Heysham

“The rigs and labs that

Amec Foster Wheeler

maintain on our behalf

are a key aspect of our





Amec Foster Wheeler

and its predecessors

have been involved

with the AGR fleet

since design, build and


reduction in wholesale electricity prices.

We learned that it’s really important to be

clear on the fundamentals.

“These are to focus on 0-65-9 (zero harm,

annual output target of 65TWh and 9 years

average lifetime extension). Nuclear safety

continues to be our overriding priority

and we will continue to make significant

investment in the nuclear fleet to ensure

that safe reliable operation continues over

the lifetime of the assets and that we meet

our lifetime targets.

Services Alliance (a group of suppliers

which includes Amec Foster Wheeler) to

ensure an appropriate response to the

current challenges caused by falling

wholesale electricity prices.

“We continue to invest more than £600m

a year in our nuclear assets. The energy

market has been impacted significantly by

falling oil and gas prices. In response to

this, EDF Energy has launched a value and

efficiency programme to ensure that we

continue to invest in the nuclear assets in

the most effective way.

“We try to involve partners at the

strategic level at an early stage to explain

the issues we are facing and we invite ideas

from partners about how we can do things


“By having strong collaborative

relationships with our supply chain

partners we are able to work together to

address these challenges. Often the key

thing is for us and our suppliers to work

together to ensure we have got the right

solution before we embark on a project.

The response also includes identifying

more efficient ways of working or working

together on more innovative solutions.”

So how does EDF Energy continue to

ensure a focus on safe reliable operation?

“We clearly have to respond to the

challenge presented by the energy market

but our response has to be appropriate.”

says Andy.

“In the early 2000s, British Energy failed

as a result of the way it responded to a

“It’s also worth saying that although we

have declared our best judgements about

end of life; it’s in the interests of the UK

energy market for us to operate safely

for as long as we are able to. Continuing

our extensive research and development

programme is vital to further increase

our understanding of the condition of the

boilers and the consequences of cracks in

the graphite core.”

Amec Foster Wheeler is heavily engaged in

the overall graphite programme designed

to understand the cores’ tolerance to

damage as they age. This includes stress

analysis modelling, damage tolerance

modelling – validating the results of these

models using one-quarter to one-eighth

scale graphite core rigs based at

Birchwood – as well as physical graphite

material testing in our laboratories.

“Under the Lifetime Agreement we have

agreed a longer term contract to secure

those skills and capabilities,” says Andy.


On track –

nuclear’s answer

to the Olympics

Tom Samson, chief executive of NuGen, is

leading the project to build three Westinghouse

AP1000 reactors at Moorside near Sellafield.

He explains the challenges facing the project

and how Amec Foster Wheeler is helping to

overcome them


oorside is Europe’s biggest

nuclear new build project with

generating capacity of up to

3.8GW, about 7% of the UK’s electricity

demand. Or, as Tom Samson puts it:

“This project is an Olympic-scale

opportunity and could be transformational

for the region in terms of jobs and

economic benefits and of huge significance

to the future of the UK.

“Construction of the new reactors will

create thousands of skilled jobs over the

next decade and we estimate that up to

60% of our project could be accessible

to the UK supply chain.”

With such a pioneering project, there

are plenty of obstacles to overcome.

Tom explains: “I don’t think my job is

supposed to be easy. I came to NuGen

because I knew it was going to be a

challenge, but I know that our organisation

is up to that challenge and the progress

we’ve made over the last 12 months has

clearly demonstrated that.”

Tom was previously Chief Operating

Officer on Abu Dhabi’s nuclear programme,

which effectively started from scratch

in a country with no nuclear heritage.

In contrast, Moorside is less than a mile

from Calder Hall, where the commercial

nuclear industry began some 60 years ago.

“The people in West Cumbria have been

incredibly supportive and welcoming,”

he says. “I genuinely believe that this

project has the best technology, with

the best people in the best place.

“We will make choices on key components

based on the AP1000 fleet track record

to ensure that we work with vendors who

can deliver the most schedule-sensitive

components. Similarly, all our choices

should be driven by cost competitiveness

if we are to provide affordable baseload

power. For sure there is a skills challenge

but there will only be a shortage if we fail to

engage with the market.”

Tom says NuGen, a joint venture between

Toshiba and ENGIE, is on track to make

its final investment decision by 2018. It is

seeking debt financing, focusing on Export

Credit Agency and Treasury supported

Artist’s impressions of the proposed

railway station near Moorside and,

below, of the NuGen development



debt on a highly structured, limited

recourse basis.

“This is a first for this industry, but we

remain confident that our delivery

capability and technology credentials will

enable us to make this happen.”

Amec Foster Wheeler’s support has been

‘extremely valuable’, says Tom, especially

on the Environmental Impact Assessment

and support with permitting.

He adds: “The specialisms and expert

knowledge that Amec Foster Wheeler has

been able to bring have been pivotal in

helping us collect the information which

is essential in progressing through the

development phase of the Moorside


“Amec Foster Wheeler has also been

instrumental in strengthening

Westinghouse in their responses to the

ONR under the GDA process, bringing

a deep knowledge of the UK

regulatory landscape to improve the

quality of safety case submissions and

reach timely closure of the open issues

necessary to secure Design Acceptance

Confirmation and Statement of Design

Acceptability for Moorside.

“We have also held a number of

discussions with Amec Foster Wheeler’s

leadership on how we can strengthen our

relationship – we are the start of a long

journey and need strong partners by our

side throughout that journey for us to be


And Tom recalls that it was a member of

the Amec Foster Wheeler environmental

monitoring team who spotted and filmed

the most famous visitor to Moorside –

Myrtle the Turtle – a rare leatherback sea

turtle spotted off St Bees Head during

assessment work.

“I genuinely believe that

this project has the best

technology, with the best

people in the best place”



Tom’s the man to bring

industry’s image up to date

What does an ex-MP know about nuclear power? A lot, in the case of

Tom Greatrex, who was a shadow energy minister in the last parliament

life extension of the UK’s existing reactor

fleet or the latest twist in the long-running

saga of Hinkley Point C.

“It’s important that the membership of the

NIA feel that they get value from the way

the organisation communicates on their

behalf,” he says.

Tom Greatrex

Tom Greatrex admits that when

he became Chief Executive of the

Nuclear Industry Association in

February, there were surprises in store. “I

wasn’t aware that the UK nuclear industry

was involved in such a wide range of activity,”

he says. This learning curve has left

Tom even more convinced that the nuclear

sector can play a big part in rebalancing

the UK economy. But he warns that the

industry needs to work on its public profile

to make sure that it reflects current reality.

“Perceptions are coloured by an outdated

understanding of what nuclear power

is about,” he says. “There is a lack of

awareness about the breadth and depth

of the knowledge base in the UK nuclear

industry and we all need to think about

how we can get the message across.”

Tom cites the fact that expertise and

capability developed in the UK is playing

an important role in the clean-up of

Fukushima, where Amec Foster

Wheeler is helping Japan’s nuclear

decommissioning body to draw up a

waste management strategy.

He adds: “This is an industry with great

export potential and, if we do it right,

we can create a highly specialised

decommissioning supply chain that will

create prosperity for generations to come.”

Tom’s professional background differs

markedly from that of Keith Parker, the

former senior Department of Energy civil

servant who has run the NIA since 2003.

However, he is quick to pay tribute to

his predecessor: “Keith has done a

tremendous job, especially when you

consider where nuclear policy was 13 years

ago and where it is now. Keith has played a

crucial role in driving that dialogue along.”

With copious experience of the media,

including writing columns for Utility Week,

Tom has grasped the opportunity to

complement the NIA’s behind-the-scenes

lobbying by raising his head above the

parapet to represent its 260 member

companies more visibly in the policy

debate. He is ready and willing to be

interviewed on television and radio when

big energy stories break, whether about

“There is almost no aspect of policy that

doesn’t impact on energy – from whether

elderly people can afford to heat their

homes to geopolitical issues in the Middle

East. That’s why it’s so important that

energy policy is right.”

Drawing on his experience, Tom expects

that Labour’s broad consensus in favour of

nuclear as a key part of the energy mix will

survive the current turmoil in the party.

“When you look back to when the last

Labour government began the process

towards the new build programme, the

Conservatives said they regarded

nuclear as a last resort and the Liberal

Democrats were opposed to the idea.

But when they were in government, they

both moved their positions.

“That’s because anyone who looks at the

facts will see that nuclear has to be

included in any serious proposal for

meeting our future energy needs. MPs in

all the main parties are aware of that and

it’s important that we retain that broad

base of support.

“This is a long-term business and it is

almost certain that there will be changes

in political leadership during the lifetime

of these new stations.”



Nuclear first

on Wylfa’s last day

Amec Foster Wheeler experts have found a way to achieve huge savings

as reactors approach planned closure

and fuel transport, as the interfaces with

them were crucial.”

Wylfa 1 nuclear

power plant

When the Wylfa 1 reactor was

shut down for the last time on

the afternoon of December

30, 2015, it brought an end to the 49-year

history of the UK’s Magnox stations.

But a nuclear first was achieved that day

as well as the reactor had almost used up

all of its available fuel.

Duncan Hall, Nuclear Science and

Structural Integrity Operations Manager

at Amec Foster Wheeler’s Clean Energy

business, said: “What Magnox did, with

our support, at Wylfa has not been done

anywhere else in the world as far as we’re

aware. Usually, reactors tend to be shut

down with lots of very productive fuel still

inside. That would probably include some

fuel that was placed inside the reactor

only a few months before. This is a waste

because fuel doesn’t get to its most

reactive state until it’s been in use for

about a year.”

Needless to say, Wylfa’s precise timing

did not happen by accident. Back in 2002,

Magnox commenced initial studies into

fuel cycle optimisation at the four

remaining stations, which also included

Sizewell, Dungeness and Oldbury.

Magnox staff from engineering,

reactor physics, operations, fuel route and

commercial departments were involved in

determining the strategic options, along

with experts in fuel performance, fuel

cycle design, reactor fault studies, safety

case, and independent nuclear safety

assessment. Because the capacity for fuel

reprocessing would be a major constraint,

representatives from Sellafield were also

involved. The programme, which had not

been attempted anywhere before, was divided

up into four parallel work-streams of

reactor physics, modellers, fault analysts

and safety case authors, plus site

implementation teams, all operating to

tight timescales.

Amec Foster Wheeler’s reactor and fuel

performance, reactor physics and fuel

cycle management teams worked closely

with Magnox throughout. Duncan

explained: “Most people think this is

something just for physicists and fuel

cycle people to deal with. In fact the key to

success was to involve fuel reprocessing

The lessons from Sizewell and Dungeness

were applied by Magnox to Oldbury and

Wylfa, where more fuel efficient fuel cycles

and associated safety cases were

implemented. And when the opportunity

arose to generate electricity for longer

at Oldbury and Wylfa, these greater

efficiencies really came into their own.

At Wylfa, thanks to the transfer of fuel

from the already shut down reactor 2, the

station continued generating for another

five years without needing to order any

new fuel.

“Magnox were able to dispense with the

equivalent of four years’ fuel purchases,”

said Duncan. “And because the used fuel

was more irradiated because it had been

in the reactor for longer, it did not cost as

much to reprocess.”

As an indication of just how massive the

savings could be, it’s worth noting that a

Magnox reactor has space for more than

48,000 fuel elements. Meanwhile, the

additional generation at Oldbury and

Wylfa reaped a windfall of more than £1bn

for the British taxpayer via the Nuclear

Decommissioning Authority, Magnox’s


News of the remarkable results achieved

at Wylfa have spread around the industry

in the UK and abroad, so Duncan and his

team are now talking to other operators

about how they can achieve the same


To find out more:


Innovation that

stops money

going to waste

Perceptions about the cost of

decommissioning nuclear installations

and disposing of radioactive waste are

being challenged by research breakthroughs

and new ways of working

“Our engineered solutions

are highly pragmatic

whilst remaining safe,

and are based on solutions

that we know will work”


An operator monitoring

the SIAL® system at a nuclear

power plant


elentless pressure on public

spending means the nuclear

industry needs to find simpler and

cheaper ways of doing things, provided they

are still safe and compliant with regulatory


Amec Foster Wheeler’s approach is a

combination of effective delivery, avoiding

over-engineered solutions, and the More 4

Less methodology of delivering more work

for less cost without compromising on

safety. The company is involved in

decommissioning and radioactive waste

management in Europe, the USA and Asia.

It has been working at Sellafield for more

than 40 years and at Chernobyl for more

than 20.

Drawing on the skills and knowledge of

its global network, it has concluded that

cost reductions of 50% are achievable on

many UK projects, without any significant

alteration in scope. The analysis has also

found potential to cut project timescales

by half thanks to more efficient testing and

advanced waste processing technologies.

“Nuclear decommissioning is not a new

industry any more,” says Andy White, Vice

President for Decommissioning at Amec

Foster Wheeler’s Clean Energy business.

“We are constantly questioning existing

ways of working and finding ways to redefine

global best practice with a view to reducing

costs for the customer.

“We are doing this by applying proven

technologies and techniques, supported

by teams who are experienced in providing

services based on them and creating the

outcomes that customers want.”

For example, the inorganic SIAL® matrix

has proved its worth as a method for

immobilising and solidifying waste streams

such as sludge, ion exchange resins and

incinerator ash. Developed by Amec Foster

Wheeler Slovakia in response to a nuclear

power plant accident, the technique has

been licensed and successfully applied in

central Europe for many years. In simple

terms, the wastes are sucked up by a robot,

pumped into a drum and then dosed with

inorganic solids – mainly compounds of

silicon and aluminium.

SIAL® can be used with low, intermediate

and higher-level wastes. Its superior

encapsulation properties quickly turn

them into a solid with low leachability of



How SIAL works

Managed radioactive waste treatment service

Waste characterization



Treatment Treatment


Sampling Detailed physical, of the waste chemical, radiological

and radiochemical characterisation

Detailed physical, chemical,

radiological and radiochemical


u Retrieval Retrieval of of the the waste waste

u Filtration, dewatering

u On-site On-site

u Mobile Mobile treatment treatment units units

u SIAL® SIAL matrix ® matrix technology

u Final Final package package form form approved approved by by

regulatory regulatory authority authority

radionuclides and also makes the material

much easier to handle, transport and store.

Pavol Stuller, Director for Central and

Eastern Europe, explains: “There are

demanding requirements around long-term

storage of nuclear waste such as spent

ion exchange resins or non-standard

waste. SIAL® is the only tried and tested

geopolymer encapsulate on the market

for use in nuclear power plants. It has a

successful track record, having treated

more than 1,000 tons of waste.”

The use of SIAL® also saves money

because fewer waste containers are

required, with an additional knock-on

saving in final storage costs.

Andy White says: “Traditionally, UK

decommissioning clients have opted for

‘make’ solutions, engaging the supply

chain in a piecemeal fashion, with

different contracting vehicles used to

deliver the various parts of the project:

problem definition, solution development,

FEED, implementation et cetera.

This is inefficient and doesn’t make use

of best practice from the wider industry,

where solutions may already exist. It also

leads to over-engineered solutions.

The approach in eastern Europe is very

different, and UK customers have been

quick to see its attractions.”

Asked to build a test rig for a six-month

project at a waste treatment plant, Amec

Foster Wheeler proposed a very basic

design re-using an existing structure in its

test facility at Birchwood, Warrington. This

saved money because there was no need

to manufacture access stairs. The client

originally considered a design that was fully

engineered to last more than 20 years.

In another project, Amec Foster

Wheeler has been contracted on a fixed

price basis to provide a service for the

recovery, treatment and export of waste,

with an incentive to minimise the number

of drums produced. It takes ownership

of the full project lifecycle, including all

supporting documentation, engineering,

manufacturing and retrieval/treatment


Adds Andy White: “Our engineered

solutions are highly pragmatic whilst

remaining safe, and are based on solutions

that we know will work, with only the

minimum of modifications made to adapt

to the facility in question.

“The equipment is simple, mobile, easy to

decontaminate, can be re-used, and can

be deployed as close to the source of the

waste as possible, hence minimising both

the work and the risk associated with

moving nuclear materials.

Scabbling success

Amec Foster Wheeler Slovakia’s

problem-solving skills are also being

applied to more unusual decommissioning

challenges. At a former experimental

nuclear reactor site in the UK, a postirradiation

examination cell for nuclear

fuel had been left with large areas of high

contamination on the floor and walls.

Five millimetres of concrete had to be

skimmed off to remove contaminated

material, but all work had to be done

remotely because of the high dose risks

to operators. Drawing on experience of

developing new techniques in response

to decommissioning challenges at

nuclear power plants, Amec Foster Wheeler

Slovakia designed a remotely operated

scabbling head attached to a crab and

arm system which can traverse in three

dimensions. The machine was used

successfully to remove the surface

concrete to the required depth at the

rate of 3 square metres per hour.

The equipment was deployed by Amec

Foster Wheeler’s UK-based Specialist

Remediation Services team and the results

far exceeded the customer’s expectations.

To find out more:


Nuclear and the

North Sea

Amec Foster Wheeler is uniquely placed for

decommissioning work in the North Sea oil

and gas industry thanks to its experience in

the nuclear sector

“There is an opportunity

to develop a world

leading decommissioning

industry whose capabilities

can be exported”


Operationally, there are few obvious

parallels between oil and gas and

the nuclear industry. Until, that is,

an installation needs to be decommissioned.

At that point, both industries have to

grapple with hazardous waste, complex

engineering tasks, strict legislative and

regulatory frameworks, and the ever-present

danger of overrunning costs.

In terms of generation capacity, nuclear

power has contributed 20% to 25% of the

UK’s electricity generation over the last four

decades, with hydrocarbons (coal, gas and

oil) contributing around 50%. When the

cost of decommissioning and waste

management is totted up, these

positions are reversed. UK North Sea

decommissioning is currently expected

to cost just over half the estimated £70bn

to £80bn for UK civil nuclear.

So far, the pace of work on oil and gas

decommissioning has lagged behind, largely

because redundant platforms can be left

standing idle for years, which is not an

environmentally safe option for much of the

UK’s nuclear infrastructure. In recent

decades, several hundred commercial,

prototype and research reactors have been

retired throughout the world. Amec Foster

Wheeler has been involved in this kind of

work for 25 years. And the company has

learned some valuable lessons which

can help control the costs of North Sea

decommissioning, which are expected

to run to £17bn over the next 10 years alone.

This represents only 17% of the 470

installations that will need to be removed

over the next 30-40 years at an approximate

total cost of £47bn. This huge sum will be

borne by both operators and the taxpayer.

Bob Churchill, Strategic Business

Development Director of Amec Foster

Wheeler’s Clean Energy Europe business,

says: “We have been working internally on a

transfer of ideas and experiences from the

nuclear industry to oil and gas for a couple

of years.

“Overall, 50% to 60% of nuclear

decommissioning work is concerned with

radioactive waste, so 40% to 50% of the

work has a lot in common with oil and gas.

It is pretty industrial and although the

regulators are different, they both have

uppermost in their minds a focus on safety,

health and environmental considerations.”

Bob has concluded that there are two big

messages from the nuclear experience.

“The first question is this: ‘How do we take

a company or an organisation, which has

spent decades taking rightful pride in safe

and efficient operation, whether of an oil

platform or a nuclear power plant, and then

repurpose it to decommission that asset and

take it apart?’

“It’s really a case of giving them a new

mission, and this learning is absolutely



“Nuclear is probably 10 years

ahead in the context of what it

takes to repurpose an organisation

from operation and production to


Offshore oil platform

in the North Sea

transferable. Nuclear is probably 10 years

ahead in the context of what it takes to

repurpose an organisation from operation

and production to decommissioning and

waste management.

“It’s easy to dismiss these as soft skills and

take the view that it should be easy to tell

people to do something different. But it’s

not so easy to move big organisations in a

completely new direction –you have to win

hearts and minds to get buy-in and bring

about the necessary changes.”

The second area, says Bob, is technology.

Tools and systems developed in the

nuclear industry are transferable to oil

and gas, particularly the use of remotely

operated vehicles for handling hazardous


Other transferable skills are the

automation of dismantling large

structures, decontamination, waste

management and recycling of materials.

Oil and gas can also learn from the UK

nuclear industry’s use of lifetime plans

(LTP) for each site, which outline the work

required to operate, commission and clean

up the sites, and are overseen by the

Nuclear Decommissioning Authority


This had led to huge cost savings for the

taxpayer and helped organisations to

repurpose themselves and make the

cultural changes needed. Meanwhile,

Programme Management ensured a

seamless transition from late life operation

to decommissioning.

Bob says: “We have been working in

nuclear decommissioning for 25 years and

we have seen how LTPs and programme

management have changed the landscape.

“When combined with our extensive oil and

gas skills and knowledge, this means we

are uniquely placed to bring this learning

to the North Sea, where we are already

shaping the new horizon and proactively

finding solutions. Our knowledge is now

increasingly sought after internationally

because we have the widest experience to

address the next steps boldly and at pace.

“If North Sea decommissioning is done

well, the prize is huge. There is an

opportunity to develop a world-leading

decommissioning industry whose

capabilities can be exported to other

global ageing basins, just as Amec Foster

Wheeler’s nuclear decommissioning skills

are now being applied at Chernobyl and


Unique set of skills

In the oil and gas sector, Amec Foster

Wheeler has implemented ‘More 4

Less’, a new approach which focuses

on efficiency, challenging assumptions

and driving new ways of thinking.

Craig Shanaghey, Director of Operations

of the Europe Offshore business, says:

“Applying this to the decommissioning

market, we believe developing a much

stronger link between late life asset

management and decommissioning is

the way forward. This means earlier

planning to facilitate strong contract

management that extracts value and

a proactive approach that protects the

value of assets, and assures the asset

effectively transfers from production to

decommissioning mode. Amec Foster

Wheeler is well placed to offer a different

mind-set and a unique set of skills

with the combination of our oil & gas

experience and our extensive nuclear

decommissioning experience. We can

maximise field life of our assets, and

effectively prepare for decommissioning

execution at minimum cost. That is how

we can deliver more for less.”

To find out more:



Chernobyl safe

Thirty years after the accident, Amec Foster

Wheeler is still working at the former nuclear

power plant in Ukraine

On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl

nuclear power plant suffered an

accident in one of its four reactors

that sent a radioactive plume into the

atmosphere. In the immediate aftermath,

this caused dozens of deaths and

contaminated tens of thousands of

acres of land with radiation, leading to

evacuation of some 35,000 people and

the establishment of a 35km radius

exclusion zone.

The ISF2 facility

A substantial quantity of fallout landed in

Belarus but some traces of radioactive

material reached as far as Finland and

Great Britain. The first western European

knowledge of the accident was from

radiation monitors in Sweden.

Since then, international organisations

have been active at the Chernobyl site on

a number of programmes of nuclear safety

enhancement. Amec Foster Wheeler has

been working there since the mid-1990s,

starting with short-term safety upgrades

to the three surviving reactors, ChNPP 1,

2 and 3.

We have also provided project

management support for the

decommissioning of the three undamaged

units, and consultancy and project

management services for the Liquid

Radwaste Treatment Facility, which was

completed in 2010, and the Interim Spent

Fuel Storage Facility 2 (ISF2).

These two projects have been funded by

international (mainly European) donations

through the Nuclear Safety Account, which

is managed by the European Bank for

Reconstruction and Development.

The initial work was part of an EU-funded

programme to address concerns about

unsafe design characteristics in

Soviet-designed RBMK reactors, similar to

those at Chernobyl.

Amec Foster Wheeler also carried out a

similar programme at Smolensk NPP in

Russia, which involved improvements to

the safety margins and safety culture and

strengthening the skills of operators and


“Very few UK-based

companies have worked

at Chernobyl at all,

never mind for more

than 20 years”


ISF2 is designed for the huge task of

storing all the used fuel on the Chernobyl

site for at least 100 years. It has the

world’s largest ‘hot cell’ – a shielded

containment chamber for work on

radioactive material – which will be

used to dismember 22,000 RBMK fuel

assemblies before they are placed in

casks for storage and monitoring.

Amec Foster Wheeler’s team running the

ISF2 Project Management Unit comprises

expatriates, locally recruited employees

and embedded members of staff from

the customer. Project completion is

expected in 2017. John Dynan, Operations

Manager, Waste Management and

Decommissioning, says: “Very few UKbased

companies have worked at

Chernobyl at all, never mind for more than

20 years as Amec Foster Wheeler has.

We have learned a great deal from playing

a part in one of the most important nuclear

decommissioning projects anywhere in

the world.”

To find out more:




land of opportunity

Clean Energy is expanding at a busy time for the

country’s nuclear sector

Cernavoda NPP


he Romanian business began 2016

with 15 members of staff but Sorin

Patrascoiu, Managing Director of

Amec Foster Wheeler Nuclear Romania,

expects this to increase to 30 by the

end of the year. Our main clients are

Societatea Nationala Nuclearelectrica

(SNN), the generating company, and

Agentia Nucleara si pentru Deseuri

Radioactive din Romania (ANDR), the

national nuclear agency responsible for

dealing with radioactive waste.

Sorin says: “There is quite an interesting

stream of projects coming up during

2016. I think we are in a very good position

because we are the only big international

company with a permanent office and well

established engineering team in Romania.

Our competitors don’t have a presence

here, they mainly rely on partnerships with

local companies.”

Sorin is hiring Romanian specialists for the

new Candu Delivery Centre in Bucharest,

another collaboration between Clean

Energy and Nuclear Canada. The idea of

the CDC is that Romanian Candu experts

will support Cernavoda and also work

remotely on Canadian projects.

“We expect to have 10 people in the CDC

by the end of this year,” said Sorin, who

is sure that the team can meet Canadian

standards but at lower cost.

Clean Energy is also preparing its

participation in an anticipated bid for the

owner’s engineer role on ANDR’s planned

repository at Saligny. This work would

include site and construction licensing,

managing the procurement processes

for the EPC contractor and operator

and supervising their work. And we

are embarking on work to secure

engineering, licensing and regulatory

approval for a pilot plant to establish the

technology that will be used at the Tritium

Removal Facility at Cernavoda.

Romania is planning an ambitious, €7.2bn

new build programme – China General

Nuclear Power Group has been selected

as the key investor in Units 3 and 4 at

Cernavoda. Some of the concrete

structures have already been built for

the new reactors, which will be updated

versions of the Candu-6.

This will create opportunities for

environmental permitting work as well as

nuclear licensing. To make sure that Amec

Foster Wheeler is in the best position

to capitalise, our Environment &

Infrastructure business in Romania,

which employs five people in Bucharest,

will be absorbed by Clean Energy.

SNN operates Cernavoda NPP, which

generates about 20% of the country’s

electricity using Candu-6 reactors – Unit

1 was commissioned in 1996 and Unit 2

in 2007. Two contracts were signed in the

first quarter of this year: support for SNN

to plan the refurbishment of Cernavoda

Unit 1, a large project which is likely to

cost between €1bn and €1.5bn; and for

independent verification of the design of a

nuclear safety system at the plant.

Clean Energy is also supporting Amec

Foster Wheeler Nuclear Canada to supply

a model of the primary heat transfer

circuit and to verify its pipes and supports.

And we will also be bidding for more

independent verification work and tasks

related to normal operational and

maintenance programmes at Cernavoda.

Dr Bill Miller, Clean Energy’s Repository

Director, is reviewing Romania’s national

radioactive waste strategy in a joint project

with a team of experts from CE Romania

and ANDRA, the French radwaste agency.

ANDR, Romania’s national nuclear agency,

expects the work of this multinational

team to bring the strategy into line with

important changes in European


Alice Dima, ANDR Director, said the review

was “of utmost importance considering

the important impact of the strategy on

redefining national policy objectives, on

defining the national inventory, on the longterm

investment plan for radwaste and

spent fuel disposal and related timelines,

and on nuclear-related R&D activities.”

Sorin Patrascoiu

Sorin, who is on the board of industry trade

body Romatom, says: “Combined nuclear

and environmental competence will be a

big asset when we bid for this work. It will

also give us a chance to find new clients

in other areas of the power sector such as

coal-fired generation and waste-to-energy

municipal projects.”


Masters success

for Clean Energy’s

part-time students

Medal honours

David’s work on

nuclear corrosion

David Tice, Chief Corrosion

Scientist in Materials Science

and Structural Integrity at Amec

Foster Wheeler’s Clean Energy business,

has been selected to receive the Coriou

Medal by the European Federation of


Among many world-leading insights

and advances, he has:

u Generated the most extensive data set

on fatigue crack growth of stainless

steel in high temperature water

relevant to pressurised water reactors;

Katy Greer and Cliff Harris, from

Applied Chemistry and Materials,

have graduated with an MSc in

Corrosion Control and Engineering from

Manchester University.

Both were studying part time, sponsored

and supported by Amec Foster Wheeler,

and both were awarded a Distinction.

Greg Willetts, Vice President for

Consultancy, said: “I’d like to congratulate

Katy and Cliff on getting very impressive

results on their MSc course.

“I know that managing to find time to study

while working is always difficult, so that

makes the achievement of a distinction all

the more remarkable.”

Cliff, a Senior Consultant based at

Birchwood, said: “I’m extremely grateful

to Amec Foster Wheeler for their

sponsorship and support throughout

this degree course. I feel that my career

will undoubtedly benefit from having this


Katy, a Materials Consultant also based at

Birchwood, added: “The MSc has been a

great opportunity for me, not just in terms

of gaining knowledge, but also in gaining a

well-respected qualification.

“The work was challenging and I am

incredibly pleased to be graduating with a


The award,

which will be

presented at

the Eurocorr

2016 conference

in Montpellier,

France in


is made to a scientist or engineer who has

helped to solve nuclear corrosion issues

and has made progress in understanding


The medal design is based on an image of

a stress corrosion crack in the Alloy

600 material used to make various

components in pressurised water reactors.

David was proposed for the award by

Professor John Stairmand, Amec Foster

Wheeler’s Technical Director and Chief

Scientist for Materials and Structural

Integrity; Professor Andrew Sherry, Chief

Scientist of the National Nuclear

Laboratory; Professor Stuart Lyon of

Manchester University; and Dr. Alan

Turnbull, Senior Fellow of the National

Physical Laboratory.

During more than 35 years in the nuclear

industry, he has led research that has

paved the way to major advances in

understanding and predictive capability.

He is an internationally recognised expert

in environmentally-assisted cracking of

nuclear materials, a process which

presents one of the major threats to

nuclear plant structural integrity.

u Identified knowledge gaps associated

with environmental fatigue endurance

and set out a route map for addressing

these issues, achieving a consensus

amongst international experts;

u Showed for the first time that

sulphate-contamination of PWR

environments causes initiation of

environmental cracking and influences

crack growth rates in low alloy

pressure vessel steels.

David is also a visiting Professor in the

Materials Performance Centre at the

University of Manchester, where he has an

active role in research project support and

student supervision.





Nuclear exam success

for HVEC team

The vast pool of skills at Amec Foster Wheeler’s

High-Value Engineering Centre (HVEC) in India is

now at the disposal of the nuclear industry around

the world.

MELCOR is this

year’s model for


MELCOR is a code used to model the

behaviour of nuclear plants in severe

accident conditions and interest in it

has risen since Fukushima.

Martin Turner and Paul Smith from

Amec Foster Wheeler chaired specialist

sessions at the two-day meeting in April.

Our co-sponsor was Imperial College

London, which provided the venue.

Delegates from 18 countries heard

presentations on recent updates to the

programme and from users about how

it is being applied for safety studies.

Notable this year was the increased

interest in using MELCOR to model

fusion reactors. Andrew Grief and

Simon Owen from Amec Foster Wheeler

presented papers on this topic.

Six engineers based in Chennai

have passed the Award for Nuclear

Industry Awareness (ANIA),

a qualification designed by the UK’s

National Skills Academy for Nuclear to

provide a grounding in the sector’s specific

requirements. Srinivas Dendukuri, Chief

Engineer – Project Engineering, said:

“For someone like me coming from the oil

and gas sector, this course has definitely

opened doors to the nuclear industry by

providing an introductory engineering


Meanwhile, his colleague Sankar

Chockalingam, a senior electrical

engineer with 13 years’ experience, is on

secondment from Chennai to Birchwood,

near Warrington, where he is working on

his first nuclear project, designing a new

intermediate-level waste store for the

former fast reactor site in Dounreay,

Scotland. The HVEC, which has 800 people

in the main office in Chennai and another

240 in Kolkata, has been operating since

1998. Andrew Forrest, Engineering

Director of Amec Foster Wheeler’s Clean

Energy business, said: “Within most

projects there are areas of work where

a qualified engineer’s core skills can be

utilised, irrespective of their industry

background. Good examples are electrical

design, piping design, CAD work,

document control – the list goes on.

“Effectively combining the HVEC’s

capability with our local knowledge of

the customer, site and regulatory

requirements gives us a powerful

competitive edge.”

The HVEC’s capability covers all main

engineering design disciplines

(process, mechanical, CE&I and CS&A)

plus procurement, construction

management and project administration.

Its teams use industry-leading systems

throughout all disciplines including Aveva

(PDMS) and Autodesk tools for 3D CAD

and database-driven engineering.

And with about 40% of the HVEC’s

engineers boasting 15 or more years’

experience, many of them certified by UK

institutes, there is no shortage of expertise.

Left: Sankar

Chockalingam and

above, the HVEC’s

successful nuclear

exam candidates

(left to right)





Logithasan Shunmugavel, Kumaravel

Margabandu, Nagarajan Krishnamurthy

and Gengadharan Krishnan.

Connected Excellence for

our global nuclear customers

A trusted partner in nuclear, we operate on 5 continents, in more than 15 countries

and have 60 years unrivalled experience.

Global Nuclear experience

Global Nuclear Pedigree

We are technology independent and have

comprehensive experience of all major reactor types.


GenIV technologies, SMR, Fusion

We have over


nuclear professionals

around the world

To find out more, contact:

Tom Jones

Vice President for Strategic

Business Development

t: +44 (0) 1565 683024

m: +44 (0) 7827 350274


© Amec Foster Wheeler 2016

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