Robin Watson
Robin Watson

Wood wins £12m Hinkley Point C contract

Wood has won a contract as sole supplier of inspection qualification services to the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station worth approximately £12million.

EDF Energy, the station developer, has commissioned Wood’s Inspection Validation Centre (IVC) to qualify ultrasonic inspections on high integrity welds in primary circuit components for the two 1.6GW reactors.

Robin Watson, Wood chief executive, said: “Our role is to independently check the inspection methods – and assess and qualify the inspectors who will apply them – to ensure that they can detect any defects that could compromise the structural integrity of critical reactor components during the plant’s lifetime.

“Our certificated, independent accredited service forms part of the safety case for Hinkley Point C and enables our customer to satisfy the UK nuclear regulator’s requirements on inspection qualification. This contract advances our strategy to secure key positions in independent validation and equipment qualification services for UK new build programmes.”

Wood’s teams will assess the inspection procedures and their supporting technical justifications and will carry out practical trials to demonstrate that the procedures can be applied and meet their objectives. Using flaw implantation techniques, faults will be introduced into welded test pieces to test and ultimately assure that inspectors can identify them.

The work will create a total of 35 new jobs at the IVC in Warrington, UK, which works with specialist suppliers across the world.

This is the first major inspection qualification contract in the UK civil nuclear sector since the building of Sizewell B in the 1990s, when Wood’s nuclear business provided the same service and continues to provide ongoing operational support including custody of key test pieces.