Czech companies to participate in Rosatom

AKME-engineering, a joint venture between Russian State Nuclear Energy Company Rosatom and Irkutskenergo designed to create low-capacity nuclear power plants (NPP) with an SVBR reactor, has signed agreements with 13 Czech companies in the framework of the ATOMEX-Europe forum, an Interfax correspondent reported from the signing ceremony.

The agreements stipulate that these Czech companies will be included in the long-term base of equipment and service suppliers for AKME-engineering in its construction of NPPs with a 100-megawatt SVBR-100 reactor, both in Russia and other countries.

Those who signed memorandums with AKME-engineering were: Skoda JS, Vitkovice a.s., Sigma Group, Modrany Power, MPOWER Engineering, Promont, ETD Transformatory, Arako, Chemcomex Praha, ZAT, ZVVZ-Enven Engineering, Sandvik Chomutov Precision Tubes and Chladici veze Praha.

According to Vladimir Petrochenko, the head of AKME-engineering, "from the point of view of competencies, the Czech companies can supply all of the equipment for the project." However, the joint venture is considering two companies for equipment supplies: Russia's Atomenergomash, which is currently mastering the production of a nuclear reactor pressure vessel, and Czech company Skoda JS (controlled by Russia's Gazprombank), which previously supplied reactor equipment for NPPs built in Europe under Soviet projects.

SVBR reactors are designed for supplies to remote or isolated regions and can be used to desalinate sea water. The technology was previously used in the underwater nuclear fleet. A project to develop and construct a pilot block is being implemented in the framework of the federal target program 'New-generation nuclear energy technology for the period 2010-2015 and the future until 2020.' Investments in the project are estimated at 16-18 billion rubles (about $ 515-580 billion).

There are plans to build the first nuclear power unit with such a reactor in Russia by 2017.

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