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Jul 21, 2023 13:10 EEST
July 21 (SeeNews) - The Kozloduy nuclear power plant (NPP) is seeking approval from Bulgaria's nuclear energy regulator for the use of a new type of fuel to be delivered under a contract with Westinghouse Electric, the regulator said.
Kozloduy NPP has requested the licence for the US company's Robust Westinghouse Fuel Assembly (RWFA) fuel type, the Nuclear Regulatory Agency said in a press release on Thursday.
The RWFA fuel produced by Westinghouse is compatible with Kozloduy's Soviet-made VVER-1000 reactors. The fuel has been in use in six VVER-1000 units in Ukraine since 2018, according to information published by the US company.
"The next 9 months will be of critical importance for the Bulgarian Nuclear Regulator to perform a thorough and timely review of the safety analysis reports and release a permission for the fuel load on Unit 5 by next May," Westinghouse country manager Bulgaria Ivan Pironkov said in a social media post earlier this week.
Westinghouse in April signed official subcontractor agreements with Canadian uranium producer Cameco and UK-based nuclear fuel consortium Urenco, which will guarantee the ten-year supply of nuclear fuel for Kozloduy's 1,000-megawatt Unit 5.
Kozloduy and Westinghouse Electric Sweden, the European arm of Westinghouse, signed the contract for the supply of fresh nuclear fuel in December, as Bulgaria sought to diversify its sources of fuel supply, which has until now been delivered exclusively by Russian company TVEL.
Kozloduy, Bulgaria's sole nuclear power plant, last year also signed a deal with French company Framatome for the supply of fuel for its other reactor, Unit 6.
In June, Westinghouse and Kozloduy signed a separate agreement enabling the start of an assessment of the potential of the Bulgarian industry and the infrastructure at the Kozloduy site to support the construction of an AP1000 reactor there.
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