The Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (Nuclear AMRC) is working with a new alliance of Lloyd’s Register (LR), Rolls-Royce, Assystem, and Arexis to support the UK's nuclear new build programme through equipment qualification (EQ).
EQ is a systematic approach to ensuring that safety-critical components and systems being manufactured for new nuclear power stations meet the relevant quality standards. It focuses on cost reduction and minimises the impact of potential delays by mitigating potential risks. The newly formed EQ Alliance will work closely with the Nuclear AMRC and industry stakeholders during the development phase. It will produce a detailed report on EQ requirements for the UK new build programme, and examine the UK's current capability to meet those requirements. The report, due in spring 2018, will provide vital strategic guidance to help ensure that UK manufacturers are ready to meet nuclear customer requirements, reducing the risks of new build while maximising the opportunities for the UK supply chain.
Andrew Storer, Nuclear AMRC Managing Director, comments: "UK suppliers seeking to win work in nuclear new build need to understand the requirements for qualifying safety-classified equipment. This can be a barrier to winning work in the nuclear sector, and is often overlooked. However, by developing the UK's capabilities for EQ, the EQ Alliance can help UK manufacturers win work. We can also help the UK become a recognised global centre for equipment qualification for the nuclear sector, providing new export potential.”
Mark Tipping, LR’s Offshore Technology Manager, says: "EQ is an essential element in demonstrating that a nuclear power plant can be operated safely, and is a regulatory requirement which must be satisfied in order to obtain a license to operate. Naturally we are delighted to be working with our EQ Alliance partners to ensure successful delivery of this EQ project for the Nuclear AMRC and, by extension, the UK's new nuclear build programme.”
Chris Tierney from Rolls-Royce, says: “Ensuring a robust and agile EQ framework is in place will deliver significant technical and commercial benefits to the UK’s nuclear new build programme. We have partnered with some of the foremost companies in the industry to ensure the strongest combination of EQ expertise and the highest standards of delivery for the Nuclear AMRC.”
Bryn Thomas, Head of Strategic Campaigns for Assystem, highlights: “The EQ Alliance will be leading the industry in the development and delivery of efficient methodologies to support the growing supply chain, and to provide clarity of EQ requirements to the extensive nuclear new build programmes across the UK. We are committed to help the new build developers in the UK learn from the experiences of other global nuclear developments.”
Raphael Schirrer (CEO) from Arexis, explains: “The approach of the EQ Alliance brings a unique accumulated pool of EQ expertise with highly skilled resources from all consortium members.”
Over the next 12 months, the EQ Alliance will investigate the UK's capabilities to meet and manage the EQ requirements of the various technologies being developed for the UK's nuclear new build programme, and help the Nuclear AMRC make recommendations for intervention.