In mid-September, the 11th annual Nuclear Days conference took place at the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen, again this year with international participation.
In the introductory part entitled New Nuclear Power Plant for the Czech Republic - State of Preparation in 2021, experts discussed the current state and further steps in the construction of a new nuclear power source in the Czech Republic. According to Petr Závodský, director of EDU II, the tender could be announced in January 2022 and in 2024 a contract could be signed with the preferred supplier.
Nevertheless, the Czech energy industry will soon have to withdraw from coal and decommission the existing Dukovany NPP units. "One new nuclear power source does not solve anything, given that Dukovany will be optimally in operation by the mid-2040s. The key task facing the new government is to decide on the investor model and the timing of the preparation of other sources," said Tomáš Ehler from the Nuclear Energy Section of Ministry of Industry and Trade (MIT).
According to Petr Závodský, 35 TWh of electricity is currently produced from coal in the Czech Republic, which corresponds to approximately 4 Temelín units. The probable solution could therefore be to include an option for another three blocks in the demand documentation.
How will Czech companies apply?
Great discussions were again held about the involvement of Czech industry. According to Ehler, the ambition of the MIT is for the Czech industry and construction to receive at least 60% of orders. "The role of Czech companies does not end with construction, they can be crucial for the Czech state even during the subsequent long-term maintenance," stated František Krček, CEO of Škoda JS. He also recalled the situation from the coronavirus pandemic and the problems of Škoda JS, when it was impossible to get experts from Slovakia to maintain nuclear power plants in the Czech Republic. It has been shown that self-sufficiency can be an important safety issue. Representatives of potential suppliers also spoke at the conference.
ZAT wants to participate in the completion
The afternoon part included a block called I&C for nuclear power plants - their current state and development perspectives, moderated by Karel Stočes, marketing and sales director of our company. These systems are an integral part of the safe and reliable operation of nuclear technologies. And the control rod control system for the primary part of the nuclear power plant (RRCS) and the reactor power management system (RCS) are among the most successful products in the field of nuclear energy in our company. ZAT has 40 years of experience in the supply and service of nuclear power plants, while offering one of the most modern control systems on the market built on a modern component base, which meets the maximum requirements for high safety, reliability, and long life. "We declared to the participants of the conference that our company has the necessary competencies and is ready to supply I&C both within the construction and during the development of technologies," added Stočes.
Currently, ZAT control systems and know-how are deployed at 30 percent of nuclear power plants in the EU and at 10 percent of the world. "For example, we delivered the RRCS system to the nuclear power plants Dukovany, Mochovce, Bohunice, Temelín, Loviisa, Metsamor or Pakš," concluded Karel Stočes.
Photo source: NUCLEAR DAYS 2021 at UWB in Pilsen (jadernedny.cz)