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UK & US Sign Groundbreaking Nuclear Technology Agreement

Nexia Solutions, the organisation that will form the foundation of the National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) for the UK, has signed a ground breaking Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the US based, Idaho National Laboratory (INL). The MoU will see the UK and US pool resources and expertise to benefit both countries as well as global nuclear initiatives such as the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP). Comments Dr Peter Bleasdale, Managing Director of Nexia Solutions: “At a practical level, pooling resources and sharing expertise can help to address common issues such as reducing the cost of nuclear clean-up. At a more strategic level, the two organisations will be looking at how they can help make significant contributions to initiatives such as GNEP.” The INL is the Department of Energy’s lead technology research, development and demonstration national laboratory, while Nexia Solutions is at the forefront of developing a NNL in the UK. The two organisations have already identified areas of collaboration and Nexia Solutions will be assisting the US in the field of reprocessing as well as advising on fuel acquisition and design for Very High Temperature Reactors (VHTRs). In comparison, the INL will be providing first-hand advice on the make-up and creation of a NNL as the UK goes through this process over the next few years. Says INL Director, John Grossenbacher: “This agreement will bring together the managing contractors of two national nuclear laboratories. Combining the unique skills and capabilities of both NNLs creates a powerful partnership that can lead to significant contributions in making clean, safe, secure commercial nuclear energy available worldwide. “Both organisations have special expertise, capabilities and facilities that can complement each other, and I look forward to a productive long-term collaboration.” Concludes Peter Bleasdale: “As well as the INL, Nexia Solutions has strong links with a number of leading NNLs across the world including the Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique (CEA) in France, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO).”