Industry News Round Up
DECOM Conference to give Decommissioning Insights Report
The Offshore Decommissioning Conference, hosted by OGUK and Decom North Sea, will launch a decommissioning insight report in order to gather and highlight information on how the sector has grown in recent years.
The work breakdown structure 'WBS' began it's development in 2007 and was intially a part of OGUK’s cost estimation guidelines in 2013. Now, the guideline will examine the sector in more depth and allow us to reflect up the intellectual advancement of the sector, as well as ensuring it continues to become more efficient in the future.
OGUK has honed these guidelines in order for the lesson learned are incorporated for the collective benefit of the sector, allowing more opportunity for decommissioning collaboration. The deeper insight into the sectors, and arguably even the industrys activities should allow the deocmmissioning community to achieve accuracy across cost estimation as well as consistency. It should also provide information on identifying key elements to ensuring efficiency in future projects.
Read more here.
The Government wants Space Tech to help Nuclear Decommissioning
The NDA is partnering with the UK Space Agency on a public challenge to investigate whether images captured by orbiting satellites could prove useful for nuclear decommissioning.
As many countries plan to include nuclear fission as a major source of electricity in their carbon neutral energy mixes - including the UK, the expense of nuclear power is associated with the long and technically complex process of dismantling and cleaning up the facilities, while ensuring that radioactive materials are safely contained. In 2013, it was estimated that decommissioning the existing 9 nuclear sites would cost at least £100bn.
To battle these high costs, the UK government has launched a ‘Nuclear Decommissioning Space Data Challenge’. The challenge, which is aimed at UK start-ups and other small businesses, calls for detailed proposals for how satellite technologies could support decommissioning efforts, such as through inspections of difficult-to-access areas and counting and monitoring bulk containers. The NDA is working with the UKSA on this challenge, including sponsoring the £10,000 cash prize for the winning concept or prototype. Short-listed applicants will be invited to demonstrate their ideas at a Dragon’s Den style event run by the UKSA in January 2020.
'Remote monitoring is just one example of the uses of satellite technology that could benefit the nuclear sector,' said Sara Huntingdon, Head of Innovation at the NDA. 'There are so many opportunities here which we could explore, and I’m absolutely delighted that the NDA is the very first public sector organisation to collaborate with the UK Space Agency on this challenge.'
Melanie Brownridge, NDA Technology and Innovation Director, added: 'We’re committed to encouraging the development of ideas for decommissioning and to working with other industrial sectors on the exchange or adaptation of technologies.'
Read more here.
Robots on the rise and coming to Cumbria
A range of innovative robotic systems will be on display at an event in Cumbria this month as an £8.5 million competition moves to the next stage.
The showcase event, at Energus in Workington on 12 November, will feature the 5 projects that have been under way for 2 years as part of the Integrated Innovation in Nuclear Decommissioning competition, which is aimed at finding new ways to tackle some of Sellafield’s toughest radioactive challenges.
The initiative is funded jointly by the NDA, government agency Innovate UK and BEIS, while Sellafield is providing facilities for potentially demonstrating up to two of the integrated solutions. These solutions may be deployed to help decommission the site’s reprocessing plants, where radioactivity levels are so high that new ways to carry out the work remotely will be needed.
Combining robotics with virtual reality, 3D imaging, autonomous navigation and more, the new scaleable and transferable solutions will be required to access spaces that have been sealed for years. Once inside, they will need to characterise the challenge, including measuring and visualising the radioactivity, before cutting up the contents (including large vessels and many miles of pipework), segregating waste, then removing it for treatment and safe storage.
Read more here.