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The nuclear problems of Hitachi

Hitachi NO2NuclearPower, March 2  017Meanwhile the Japanese company Hitachi which is planning to build the proposed plant at Wylfa on Anglesey, is set to lose tens of billions of yen this financial year after withdrawing from a uranium enrichment joint venture in the US. Hitachi is expected to report a 70 billion yen ($620 million) non-operating loss by the time books are closed at the end of March. The deficit is largely attributed to the joint venture GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy Inc. withdrawing from the uranium enrichment project. Hitachi no longer expects any profits from the North Carolinabased company, of which it owns 40% and the rest by General Electric. Hitachi and GE were expecting more nuclear power plants to be built when they launched the joint fuel enrichment business, but orders have been sluggish across the globe, forcing the project to be shelved. Nevertheless, Hitachi says it will be sticking with its nuclear power business. The company said No2NuclearPower nuClear news No.93, March 2017 4 that it plans to proceed with its project to build a plant in Britain by ensuring costs are thoroughly managed. (8)

In its favour is the fact that four ABWR reactors – the type of reactor it wants to build at Wylfa – have actually been built, in Japan. But their reliability has been poor. (9) The 2011 accident at Fukushima closed down all Japanese reactors, but according to IAEA the load factor – the proportion of time the reactors were generating power – for those ABWRs in the period between 2007-11 had been below 50%. (10  http://www.no2nuclearpower.org.uk/nuclearnews/NuClearNewsNo93.pdf

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March 4, 2017 - Posted by | business and costs, Japan, UK

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