Japanese-American JV to build new UK nuclear plant

The Japanese developer of one of the UK’s planned new nuclear power stations, at Wylfa, Wales, has appointed a Japanese-American joint venture to build it.

Hitachi Ltd.-owned Horizon Nuclear Power today said that Hitachi Nuclear Energy Europe, Bechtel and JGC Corporation (UK), a subsidiary of Japan’s JGC Corporation, will be responsible for the construction of Wylfa Newydd.

Meaning "New Wylfa" in Welsh, Wylfa Newydd station will have two Advanced Boiling Water Reactors (ABWRs) generating a minimum of 2,700MW next to the old Wylfa Magnox nuclear plant on the island of Anglesey, in North Wales.

Formed in 2009 to develop new nuclear power stations in the UK, Horizon Nuclear Power was acquired by Hitachi Ltd in November 2012. As well as Wylfa Newydd, Horizon plans to build a nuclear plant at Oldbury-on-Severn in South Gloucestershire.

We expect to begin firming up relationships with our main sub-contractors – many of them British – very soon– Malcolm Twist, Menter Newydd Project Director

Horizon said the partners of the Wylfa JV, called "Menter Newydd" (Welsh for "New Venture"), have between them delivered more than 170 nuclear power stations, on top of many infrastructure mega-projects.

Hitachi Nuclear Energy Europe draws on Hitachi’s 50-year history of Boiling Water Reactor deployment, including four ABWRs, while Bechtel last year completed construction of the first nuclear power station authorised to operate in the US in the 21st century, at Watts Bar in Tennessee.

"This is a very strong team. All the partners are proven at the highest level, and I’m delighted we’ve established the balance of expertise to safely deliver for Horizon, on-cost and on-schedule," said Hitachi’s Malcolm Twist, Project Director for Menter Newydd. "We expect to begin firming up relationships with our main sub-contractors – many of them British – very soon."

Horizon said Menter Newydd will increase its UK presence in the coming weeks and months, developing construction plans for the Wylfa Newydd site and continuing to build supply chain relationships.

Hitachi-GE, which has been operating under a FEED contract to Horizon for more than three years, will continue to provide the UK ABWR technology, under sub-contract to Menter Newydd.

Horizon has just completed a further stage of public consultation in North Wales, and has appointed Duncan Hawthorne as its Chief Executive Officer.

Horizon said the UK ABWR "remains on track" to complete its regulatory Generic Design Assessment by the end of 2017.
Interested suppliers should continue to register details at, Horizon said.

Photograph: Aerial view of the old Magnox plant at Wylfa, Anglesey. Wylfa Newydd will be built beside it (UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority)

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