AECL Signs Memorandum of Understanding with China and Argentina for Future Cooperation on CANDU(R) Projects



    BEIJING, Sept. 4 /CNW/ - China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC),
Nucleoeléctrica Argentina S.A. (NASA), and Atomic Energy of Canada Limited
(AECL) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to conduct a joint
study of the potential for cooperation in design, manufacture, construction
and operation of CANDU nuclear power plants on future projects in Argentina,
Canada and China.
    CNNC and NASA have also agreed to strengthen cooperation in sharing and
exchanging their CANDU 6 nuclear power plant operational and maintenance
experience. CNNC's Third Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant began full operation in
2003, while NASA's Embalse CANDU plant in Argentina has performed excellently
for more than 24 years.
    The signing ceremony in China was attended by Daniel Cameron, Argentina's
Secretary of Energy, Eduardo Messi, President of NASA, Kang Rixin, President
of CNNC, and Ken Petrunik, Chief Operating Officer of AECL.
    During the meeting, the Argentinean delegation presented their country's
active nuclear program, including the recent agreement between NASA and AECL
to enter into commercial negotiations to build a new reactor similar to the
Qinshan Phase III design.
    "CNNC is happy with the very successful cooperation with AECL on the
Qinshan Phase III CANDU project. It was completed nearly four months ahead of
schedule and has operated very well since it went into full service," said
Kang Rixin, of CNNC, China's most comprehensive and largest nuclear power
corporation. "Working closely with the two other parties, CNNC is interested
in exploring cooperative efforts regarding various aspects of future CANDU
projects, such as the new build in Argentina."
    AECL's Ken Petrunik stated, "CANDU reactors as built in Argentina and
China are not only among the best performing proven designs, but also have the
lowest uranium consumption per terawatt hour. We are happy to see enhanced
international cooperation with great partners such as NASA and CNNC to jointly
promote the further deployment and development of this efficient technology to
meet increasing international demands and sustainable development of nuclear
power."
    Argentina's nuclear power program is centred on heavy water reactors
owned and operated by NASA. There are currently two operating reactors in the
country: Atucha-1, a 300 megawatt (MWe) net pressure heavy water reactor
(PHWR) of the pressure vessel type, supplied by Germany and in operation since
1974; and Embalse, a CANDU 6 power reactor designed and supplied by AECL that
was connected to the grid in 1983. NASA has implemented a proactive nuclear
program, including plans to extend the life of the Embalse CANDU 6 power
plant, build a new CANDU station, and complete Atucha-2, a second heavy water
reactor of 700 MWe, originally supplied by Germany.

    About AECL

    AECL is a full-service nuclear technology company providing services to
nuclear utilities around the world. Established in 1952, AECL is the designer
and builder of CANDU technology including the Advanced CANDU Reactor(R)
(ACR-1000(R)) and the CANDU 6, one of the world's top-performing reactors.
AECL's 4,800 employees provide research and development, support, design and
engineering, construction management, specialized technology, life extension,
waste management and decommissioning in support of CANDU reactor products.
More information on AECL and CANDU technology can be found at www.aecl.ca.




For further information:

For further information: Dale Coffin, Director, Corporate
Communications, Direct: (905) 403-7457, Toll free: 1-866-886-2325

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