NDA Innovation Competition Winners Have Been Announced - £3.9 Million
22nd February 2021
14 successful companies have been awarded contracts to come up with innovative approaches to remotely sort and segregate radioactive waste.
The ‘Sort and Seg' innovation competition, worth £3.9 million in total, was launched in July 2020. The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) - in partnership with Magnox Ltd, Sellafield Ltd and Innovate UK - set the challenge of coming up with proposals for using autonomous technology to sort and segregate mixed radioactive wastes at the UK’s oldest nuclear sites.
The first phase of the competition is now complete and contracts, worth up to £60k each, have been awarded to 14 consortia that will now come up with feasibility studies for their proposals, including robotics, advanced sensors and artificial intelligence.
The NDA’s Head of Innovation, Sara Huntingdon, said:The reaction to ‘Sort and Seg’ has been incredible - we have received the best response we’ve ever had for this kind competition.
It’s really exciting that most of the successful organisations are bringing in experience and ideas from other sectors and I’m really looking forward to working together with our partners and with all the winners to see how these ideas develop.
Competitions like this are an important way of engaging our supply chain, encouraging diversity of thinking and finding innovative techniques and technologies from other sectors to help deliver the NDA’s decommissioning mission and help meet the aims of the Nuclear Sector Deal.
Derek Allen, Innovation Lead, Energy Clean Growth and Infrastructure Lead at Innovate UK, said:We are delighted to be working with the NDA again to help drive innovation into the nuclear decommissioning supply chain and deliver things faster, cheaper and safer.
The response to the competition was excellent and some really exciting projects have been funded. There are some great examples of technology transfer and I look forward to seeing these innovative projects progress over the next few months.
The initial feasibility studies will be delivered in May, with the winners competing for a number of contracts - each worth up to £900k - for 15-month ‘demonstrator projects’.
AB5 Consulting Ltd
Jacobs Clean Energy Ltd
A.N. Technology Ltd
Cavendish Nuclear Ltd
Chilton Computing Ltd
Create Technologies Ltd
EDF Energy R&D Centre Ltd
Forth Engineering (Cumbria) Ltd
Red Marine Engineering Ltd
Veolia Nuclear Solutions Ltd
Ground-breaking research published in Nature Communications shows that traces of plutonium in the environment can be identified as being from global or local sources. Using soil samples taken from Dounreay, an area near to the site and 2 areas at a distance from the site, the research showed that it was possible to identify whether minute traces of plutonium in the soil came from plutonium ‘bred' in a reactor or from global fallout.
Statement issue18 March 2021 by NDA, Dounreay and Sellafield. In 2013 we concluded the development of our strategy to remove unirradiated nuclear material from Dounreay and consolidate it at Sellafield.
Dounreay has awarded an important waste clean-up contract to Jacobs as the site plans for the future of its deepest historic radioactive waste store. Jacobs and its supporting partners have been awarded a 6-year contract to provide a design management team to produce a fully integrated design for the shaft and silo project.
David Peattie, Chief Executive Officer of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, has announced the appointment of Lawrie Haynes as Chair Designate of Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd. (DSRL).
Dounreay features in a new leaflet from the Nuclear Decommissioning Agency showing recent research, development and innovation. See the leaflet link at the bottom of this page to read about some of the other investments by the NDA.
UK-Japan relationship in nuclear science boosted by robotics and automation. Britain and Japan have signed a research and technology deployment collaboration to help automate nuclear decommissioning and aspects of fusion energy production.
Issued by David Peattie, Group CEO and Accounting Officer, NDA. I am pleased to be able to share with you some significant developments within the NDA around our transport and waste businesses, further underlining our One NDA approach to working more collaboratively and efficiently to clean up the UK's earliest civil nuclear sites.
The Decommissioning Services Framework (DDF) Alliance, led by Cavendish Nuclear and supported by KDC Contractors (Veolia) and BAM Nuttall (BAM), has been successfully awarded a contract for the design of a new waste repackaging facility at the Dounreay nuclear site. The programme of work is expected to run until early 2022 and forms part of Dounreay Site Restoration Limited's (DSRL's) Decommissioning Services Framework.
Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL) has announced the appointment of Mark Rouse as its Managing Director. Mark took up the position of Managing Director in March 2020 but will now move from the current parent body organisation to Dounreay Site Restoration Limited to continue leading the business when it becomes an NDA subsidiary on 1 April 2021.
Work on Dounreay's newest radioactive waste store went up a storey last week, with the completion of a ‘mega' concrete pour. The construction project was one of the first to re-start work on 22 June, following the easing of lock down restrictions.