K-TIG to enter UK nuclear waste industry

High speed precision welding developer K-TIG will enter the UK nuclear industry sector, signing an agreement with the Sheffield-based UK Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre.

Under the agreement K-TIG will develop a turnkey robotic welding cell for the fabrication of nuclear waste containers used in the de-commissioning of UK nuclear power stations.

The company’s technology allows for welding up to 100 times faster than traditional TIG welding.

The Nuclear AMRC is developing a technology demonstration facility in conjunction with the UK nuclear regulator to demonstrate technologies that can decommission 17 nuclear power sites.

The centre will have the fabrication capability to produce three cubic metre stainless steel boxes which will house decommissioning wastes.

These wastes include those from legacy nuclear waste storage facilities such as the magnox swarf storage silo, pile fuel cladding silo and the first generation magnox storage pond.

The wastes are being decommissioned as party of the ‘retrievals’ stream at the Sellafield nuclear site, a multi-use site that has housed power generation, nuclear fuel production and waste storage.

K-TIG said in a statement: “These containers are mission critical to the successful decommissioning of the UK’s nuclear power sites and automated robotic fabrication.

“Utilising K-TIG’s welding technology os seen as the key to meeting the exacting quality standards required.”

K-TIG has previously developed prototypes and an initial tranche of three cubic metre containers.

Production of the second tranche of containers in a robotic cell to be built by K_TIG is anticipated in 2023/24.

Picture: K-TIG

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