What is it?

Nuclear decommissioning is the process of handling redundant nuclear facilities that have reached the end of their operational life. The objective is to return a nuclear site to an unrestricted, de-licensed condition or for a suitable alternative use.

In the UK, there are close to 50 facilities where decommissioning work is underway. The nature of these facilities means they cannot simply be switched off and demolished.

Built at a time with different regulatory requirements and operational priorities, the decommissioning of these facilities must consider modern safety, technical and environmental requirements.

Why is it important?

With operators working under tight controls in hazardous, physically demanding environments, successful decommissioning activities require careful planning and risk management.

The importance of decommissioning a building, plant, or equipment correctly is more critical than ever, with UK regulations requiring dismantling, decontamination, processing and disposal activities to be carried out in a way that’s safe and protects the environment.

worker in helmet and overalls

What do we do?

CRA provides support to defuelling, decommissioning and deconstruction programmes. Our services include: 

Running workshops and optioneering to develop optimal decommissioning strategies and methodologies;

Safety Case production (ALARP studies, fault schedules development, safety reviews, independent assessment and peer reviews, shielding and radiological assessment);

Advice on waste and material management, and produce safety cases for integrated waste management strategies and waste route optimisation;

Risk-informed decision making in decommissioning planning;

Human Factors (task analysis of proposed new decommissioning operations, human reliability analysis to assess the potential for human error, ergonomics assessment of new plant, human-machine interface design, and leadership and management for safety);

Our Work

Worker using dials and switches

CRA is experienced in delivering challenging decommissioning and waste management projects for major nuclear companies such as EDF, Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd, and AWE (Aldermaston) and smaller unique sites (Imperial College). Our teams have detailed plant knowledge from decades of experience support during plant during operations, defuel and decommissioning (AGR, Magnox) and experience of the full decommissioning life cycle from shutdown to delicensing.

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