Nuclear power refurbishment project signed by AECL

Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) signed agreements with Nucleoeléctrica Argentina Sociedad Anónima (NASA), operator of Argentina’s single-unit 684 MWe Embalse Nuclear Generating Station, to begin work on retubing and refurbishing the station’s Candu reactor. The project, worth C$440 million ($446 million), is expected to allow the power plant to operate for an additional 25 to 30 years. The Embalse Candu 6 reactor began commercial operation in January 1984.

AECL will begin the execution of the contract with direct support from SNC-Lavalin Nuclear Inc. until the transaction between AECL and Candu Energy Inc. (Candu), a wholly-owned subsidiary of SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. closes. Plans call for SNC-Lavalin to acquire the commercial assets of AECL’s CANDU Reactor Division. At that point, Candu will take over full responsibility for the contract.

The scope of the AECL/Candu contract includes providing key technologies and tools to support the retubing project as well as engineering and supply for plant upgrades. NASA will be the overall project manager and will carry out all reactor component procurement and oversee on-site work. Retubing the reactor involves removing and replacing all 760 reactor feeders as well as 380 fuel channels and 380 calandria tubes. The project requires an extended outage so the fuel channels can be replaced. During this outage, there is an opportunity to perform other refurbishment activities that will improve plant reliability and safety.

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