Competition for innovative nuclear decommissioning technologies launched

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), Sellafield Ltd and Innovate UK are to invest up to £3 million in projects that will integrate and demonstrate flexible innovative technologies for the nuclear decommissioning sector.

The estimated cost of decommissioning the site is £85 billion, and innovation has a significant role to play in enabling safer, faster and cheaper solutions.

The competition is open to organisations of any size working alone or with partners, that can demonstrate a route to market for their idea. Projects should integrate technologies into a single platform, or a small number of platforms, and aim to:

  • minimise human intervention
  • increase productivity
  • optimise waste treatment, packing and routing

Examples of technologies that could be part of projects include:

  • robotics and autonomous systems
  • sensors and detectors
  • imaging
  • artificial intelligence
  • virtual reality
  • digital and ICT
  • big data
  • modelling and simulation

The competition will run in 2 phases from 30 January to 19 April 2017 and will award 100% funded development contracts. Phase 1 will be for the production of detailed technology plans and business cases and is open to projects of up to £50,000 and lasting no longer than three months. The best ideas could attract funding in the second phase to develop a demonstration project. This phase can have projects up to £1.5million and must be completed by September 2019.

For further information on the competition visit which also contains details of Innovate UK’s information day on the competition on 14 February 2017 in London.