AEA Technology is set to play a leading role in the engineering studies for the £450m project to clean up the wreckage of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in the Ukraine.
The Harwell-based science and engineering business has an interest in bids for all four studies. These will address the problems of stabilising the crumbling concrete shelter around the shattered Number 4 reactor at Chernobyl and removing the radioactive debris inside.
Five or six shortlisted groups submitted bids for each study each likely to be worth £4m £7m. The Ukrainian authorities aim to award the contracts in April.
The studies will take about two years to complete and will determine exactly what remedial work is done to the shelter and how it will be implemented.
Ukraine’s nuclear authority, Energoatom, has appointed a US-French consortium of Bechtel, EdF and PNNL to act as project manager at Chernobyl and help in the tender evaluation.
AEA is leading a bid for the study on emergency systems, and is supporting France’s SGN on a second for the work on material for containing radioactive fuel.
The British company is also nuclear adviser to a consortium led by Ove Arup on a bid for the civil engineering work, and is supporting Canada’s Canatom in its tender for the study on operational safety.
AEA will also seek a role in the much larger implementation contracts in two years’ time.
It is envisaged that the task will involve up to 2,000 people working inside the shelter at a time.