Second quarter of 2000
enters plutonium immobilization cooperation with Australian company
WISE-Paris, 13 June 2000
a surprising move the French nuclear fuel company COGEMA starts a joint
company with the Australian national company ANSTO to bid on the the
US Department of Energy plutonium immobilization project. So far COGEMA
has only been involved in MOX fuel fabrication and has always refused
to consider plutonium immobilization in its own country.
is ANSTO's press release on the issue:
COGEMA ANSTO Announces
Formation of New LLC
and ANSTO, through their U.S. companies, COGEMA, Inc. and ANSTO, Inc.,
are making public the formation of a Limited Liability Corporation.
The new LLC intends to bid on one prong of the Department of Energy's
hybrid approach to excess weapons plutonium disposition: plutonium immobilization.
The goal of the immobilization project is to turn excess material into
a ceramic form and enclose it in a shield of highly radioactive glass
for long-term storage. COGEMA is already involved in the mixed-oxide
fuel portion of the DOE's plutonium disposition mission.
two companies began working together in 1995 to develop synergies with
their melter technologies. This past November the companies collaborated
to successfully transport spent research reactor fuel from Australia
to France in COGEMAs Transnuclear ship.
Rhonnie Smith, CEO of COGEMA-ANSTO, LLC, stated, 'Forging a new corporation
with ANSTO has been a positive experience. ANSTO's scientific focus
blends well with COGEMA. ANSTO's years of experience with SYNROC ceramic
waste forms will prove invaluable to the immobilization project. ANSTO
is Australia's nuclear research and development organization.
Helen Garnett, President of ANSTO, Inc., said, "COGEMA has years of
experience with plutonium facility design and operations and has more
experience handling nuclear materials than any company in the world.
We respect COGEMA's strong non-proliferation goals and were pleased
to see them successfully bid the MOX project. Our experienced team,
led by Dr. Adam Jostsons, is looking forward to the prospect of working
with COGEMA to get the rest of the job done."
the two companies bring the complete range of plutonium disposition
processes and technologies needed to assist the Department of Energy
in the disposition of excess weapons plutonium.
further information, contact:
Keenan, Communications Manager ANSTO
9717 3770 or 0418 284 813
International Release to the USA and Western Europe