Westinghouse Selects Serco for AP1000 GDA

Westinghouse, designer of the AP1000 nuclear reactor currently under assessment for the UK’s civil nuclear programme, has appointed Serco as its lead nuclear safety adviser in the UK.

Serco’s role will be to lead a team of experts to assist Westinghouse in completing Step 4 of Generic Design Assessment (GDA) for the AP1000, a critical stage in the reactor design approval process being conducted by the UK Nuclear Regulators which is due for completion in 2011.

In this role, Serco will draw on its fifty year history in nuclear safety and assurance.  The Serco team working with Westinghouse will incorporate the full breadth of the company’s specialist capabilities in nuclear engineering and structural integrity, including safety case professionals and technical experts in human factors, internal and external hazards, reactor chemistry, radiation protection, fault analysis, decommissioning and waste management.

Serco is well placed to support Westinghouse in achieving Design Acceptance Confirmation from the Regulators.  As one of the world’s most experienced companies in nuclear safety, technology and management, Serco’s work focuses on enabling the safe and uninterrupted operation of nuclear reactors and the management of complex nuclear facilities.

Some of the world’s leading experts in nuclear technology work on the Serco team developing many of today’s nuclear safety standards.  The company has qualified people who have worked on nearly every civil nuclear site in the UK, and many of its 400 plus professionals, engineers and scientists are internationally recognised for their expertise.

Between them, these experts have several thousand years’ experience in the UK nuclear industry.  Consequently, they have developed a deep understanding of the safety, security and environmental standards that are examined by the UK Regulators during Generic Design Assessment.

Chris Theobald, Managing Director of Serco’s nuclear assurance business, said:

“This contract is very significant to Serco, coming as it does at the beginning of a new era of nuclear energy in the UK.  Westinghouse is one of the foremost nuclear companies in the world, and we are delighted that they have selected Serco to support them during the assessment phase and to help ensure they realise their potential in the UK’s new civil nuclear programme.  My team are looking forward to working with their colleagues in Westinghouse, doing what we do best – providing assured and cost effective service delivery.”

The Generic Design Assessment phase is being conducted jointly by the Health and Safety Executive and Environment Agency.  They are looking to ensure that any nuclear power station built in the UK meets the highest standards of safety, security, environmental protection and waste management. The UK Government announced its support for the building of a new generation of nuclear power stations in January 2008.