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BWXT Continues TRISO Line Restart Development, Adding Kernel Formation, Sintering Operations; Joel Duling Quoted

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BWX Technologies (BWXT) has announced that the company’s TRISO nuclear fuel manufacturing restart activities will continue to progress ahead of schedule, BWXT reported on Tuesday.

“BWXT has been working expeditiously to complete our preparations to restart our TRISO line and produce TRISO fuel at scale,” said Joel Duling, president of BWXT Nuclear Operations Group, Inc. “I can’t say enough about how well our employees have performed to get us to this stage.”

BWXT has demonstrated the capability to form and sinter uranium oxycarbide (UCO) fuel kernels that serve as a precursor to the TRISO coating process. With the completion of the process, BWXT will focus on introducing two additional furnaces online to meet projected production demand before restart activities are complete.

In Dec. 2019, BWXT produced uranium solutions for TRISO fuel as the company progressed with its previously announced plans to restart its manufacturing line and increase capacity at its Lynchburg, Va. facility.

BWXT will restart its existing TRIstructural-ISOtropic (TRISO fuel) production capability and increase its capacity to position the company to meet emergent client interests in the Department of Defense (DoD) microreactors, space reactors and civil advanced reactors.

TRISO fuel can withstand extreme heat and has very low proliferation concerns and environmental risks. BWXT is the only U.S. company to manufacture irradiation-tested uranium oxycarbide TRISO fuel using production-scale equipment.

BWXT and the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) have partnered in the development and qualification of TRISO-based fuel for more than 15 years, demonstrating and establishing the company’s commercial capability for TRISO fuel manufacturing.

“[Our Employees] have positioned us to finish our restart efforts later this year, even in the face of recent challenges across the globe. The effort and accomplishment is truly phenomenal,” added Duling.

About BWXT

At BWX Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: BWXT), we are People Strong, Innovation Driven. Headquartered in Lynchburg, Va., BWXT provides safe and effective nuclear solutions for national security, clean energy, environmental remediation, nuclear medicine and space exploration. With approximately 6,600 employees, BWXT has 12 major operating sites in the U.S. and Canada. In addition, BWXT joint ventures provide management and operations at more than a dozen U.S. Department of Energy and NASA facilities.