Ambitious plans for nuclear reactors in Poland and Canada: OSGE signs an agreement with Aecon and AtkinsRealis

Luc Williams

In the presence of the Minister of Export Promotion, International Trade and Economic Development of Canada, Mary Ng, and the Canadian ambassador to Poland, Catherine Godin, OSGE signed a four-party agreement with companies involved in BWRX-300 construction project in Canada: Canadian Aecon and AtkinsRealis and GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy from the USA.

Transfer of knowledge and experience between Canadian and Polish partners

As reported OSGEthe agreement provides for cooperation to accelerate the implementation program of small modular reactors BWRX-300 in Poland. Additionally, agreements were signed in areas related to the construction of the BWRX-300 nuclear power plant with Aecon and AtkinsRealis. Aecon is responsible for the construction of the first reactor in Darlington, Canada, AtkinsRealis is the engineer for this project.

As OSGE emphasized, transfer of experience from Canadian partners will provide specialized engineering and construction knowledge necessary to develop and build a target model of cooperation with future contractors, as well as in preparations for the final selection of these contractors. These are not agreements on the selection of entities to build BWRX-300 reactors in Poland, the company noted.

As Minister Mary Ng said, “In these times, and especially in the wake of Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, like-minded countries are looking for reliable partners in our collective efforts to strengthen energy security and supply chain resilience, while taking ambitious climate action.” “Nuclear energy is a key part of that effort, and we are pleased to be able to highlight these agreements that will help create good, sustainable jobs for Canadians,” added Mary Ng.

OSGE Challenges and Goals for Selecting Contractors for BWRX-300

Our goal is to prepare OSGE for the process of selecting contractors for engineering and construction works for BWRX-300 reactors in Poland – emphasized Rafał Kasprów, president of OSGE. “We need knowledge and support from entities with appropriate experience,” he added.

“Aecon is very active in energy transformation using nuclear energy. The implementation of SMR reactors plays a significant role in achieving global sustainability goals and is a key element of the company’s strategic development,” noted Aecon Vice President Thomas Clochard.

The importance of nuclear energy and the development strategy of AtkinsRealis and Aecon

According to AtkinsRealis nuclear president Joe St. Juliana, taking into account the fact that global demand for electricity will triple by 2050, the company sees the potential to build 1,000 new nuclear reactors. “We will use our experience gained during the implementation of the BWRX-300 SMR reactor in Canada in Darlington to ensure that a similar investment in Poland is implemented in the best possible way,” emphasized St. Julian.

“Our collaboration with AtkinsRealis and Aecon in the construction of the first BWRX-300 reactor at Ontario Power Generation’s Darlington facility sets the stage for the successful implementation of BWRX-300 technology in Poland,” added GEH Vice President Sean Sexstone.

OSGE’s BWRX-300 reactor fleet construction plan for Poland

OSGE is a company in which Orlen and a private chemical company each have half of the shares. Synthos concern, owned by Michał Sołowow. OSGE plans to build in Poland GE-Hitachi BWRX-300 reactor fleet in Poland. In December 2023, the Ministry of Climate and Environment issued decisions of principle for the implementation of investments in six locations: in addition to Stawy Monowskie, also Włocławek, Ostrołęka, Dąbrowa Górnicza, Kraków – Nowa Huta and Stalowa Wola – Tarnobrzeg.

BWRX-300 belongs to the family of boiling water reactors (BWR). At the same time, due to its relatively small power – 300 MWe, it is classified as a so-called SMR – small modular reactor. The first such reactor is to be built for OPG in the Canadian Darlington nuclear power plant. The next one, according to OSGE plans – is to be built in Poland by the end of the decade. (PAP)

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