Amec, the international engineering and project management company, has been awarded a series of contracts related to the nuclear fuel cycle - from uranium mining projects in Africa to radioactive waste processing in the UK.
In Namibia, UK-based Amec has been awarded two definitive feasibility studies to further develop uranium mining projects. The value of the contracts, which will be carried out by its minerals and metals business Amec Minproc, has not been disclosed.
Under the first contract, Amec has started work for Paladin Energy on their definitive feasibility study for the Stage 4 expansion of its Langer Heinrich uranium mine. The study is targeting an overall expanded annual production of 10 million pounds U3O8 (3846 tU) and Amec is designing and costing the main processing plant. The study is expected to be completed by the end of 2011. Amec was first involved with the Langer Heinrich project in 2004 when it carried out the definitive feasibility study and subsequently the engineering, procurement and construction management contract for Paladin.
Under the second contract, Amec will conduct a definitive feasibility study for Bannerman Resources' Etango uranium project, also in Namibia. The project has a total resource of 212 million pounds U3O8 (81,545 tU). The study will focus on the development of an open-pit mining operation with an annual production capacity of 5-7 million pounds U3O8 (1900-2700 tU).
Meanwhile, Amec has been awarded a three-year contract to provide a full range of nuclear services to uranium enrichment company Urenco UK. Under the contract, the value of which has not been released, the company will provide services against specific tasks nominated by Urenco.
Also in the UK, a joint venture of Amec, Jacobs Engineering Group and Costain is one of six organizations to be awarded a framework contract by Magnox Ltd to provide waste retrieval, processing and filling services at eight of their nuclear power plant sites.
Amec said that the joint venture was is one of only three to have secured a contract for both solid and liquid wastes and it now enables the selected companies to bid for specific projects under the Magnox intermediate-level radioactive waste (ILW) management programme. The work involves the retrieval and processing of both solid and liquid ILW across all the Magnox sites in the UK and the joint venture's scope of services includes the design, construction, commissioning and operation of facilities that retrieve and package ILW, together with the decontamination of associated facilities.
That contract came shortly after Amec was awarded a two-year framework contract by Magnox Ltd to provide nuclear consultancy services at their sites across the UK.