Friday, June 11, 2010

LES’ National Enrichment Facility Begins Operation – Nuclear Industry Continues to Gear Up

image A great moment has been occurring the past couple of weeks out in Lea County, Eunice, New Mexico. Last week, Louisiana Energy Services held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for their completed facility which our CEO Marv Fertel and much of New Mexico’s leadership attended.

The final step before operation was yesterday when the NRC gave LES the go-ahead (a big achievement considering this is the first facility to make it through the combined construction and operating licensing process). For more of the story, check out Dan Yurman’s animated account at Idaho Samizdat:

Anyone who thinks there isn’t going to be a nuclear renaissance in the U.S. needs to take a look at the multi-billion bet placed by Urenco at the Louisiana Energy Services plant in Eunice, NM.

The NRC said in a statement it completed the readiness review of the Louisiana Energy in Lea County, N.M., and concluded that the facility can begin operation of the first cascade under its NRC license. A cascade is a series of rotating cylinders using centrifugal force to separate uranium isotopes.

LES CEO Gregory Smith told AP NRC’s approval is a “turning point” for the nation’s nuclear industry. The plant has contracts with Duke, Exelon, Dominion, and Progress Energy, among others, to make fuel for their reactors.

According to a report in Fuel Cycle Week for June 3, NM Governor Bill Richardson said at a ribbon cutting ceremony, "Urenco always kept their word on what they were going to do and what their timelines were."

Do stop by to check out the rest of his piece.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"A cascade is a series of rotating cylinders using centrifugal force to separate uranium isotopes.

LES CEO Gregory Smith told AP NRC’s approval is a “turning point” for the nation’s nuclear industry"

Am I the only geeky nerd here who laughed at the pun here? :)