The Thriving UK Nuclear Sector

Nov 13, 2023

As the nation seeks to diversify its energy sources and reduce carbon emissions, the UK’s nuclear sector has witnessed a resurgence in recent years. Amid this revival, manufacturers are playing a pivotal role in servicing the industry, ensuring its safety, efficiency, and sustainability.

One of the key players in the UK nuclear industry is EDF Energy, which operates the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station. This colossal project is set to become a cornerstone of the UK’s low-carbon energy future, providing electricity to around 6 million homes when fully operational. EDF Energy is working with a host of suppliers and manufacturers to construct this state-of-the-art facility, highlighting the collaborative nature of the industry.

Rolls-Royce, another major player, is not only renowned for its aircraft engines, but also for its significant contribution to the nuclear sector. The company’s nuclear division specializes in nuclear propulsion for submarines and is actively involved in the development of small modular reactors (SMRs) that promise to revolutionize nuclear power generation. These SMRs are compact, efficient, and have the potential to play a crucial role in meeting the UK’s energy needs.

Another significant contributor to the growth of the nuclear sector is British engineering company, Babcock International, who provides critical support services to the Royal Navy’s fleet of nuclear submarines and has a strong track record in maintaining and servicing these vessels. This expertise ensures the continued safety and reliability of the UK’s nuclear deterrent.

Amongst all of these major players is a vast network of smaller manufacturers, specializing in areas such as nuclear waste management, radiation protection, advanced manufacturing and advanced materials. These companies contribute significantly to the sector’s growth and innovation.

Manufacturers in the UK nuclear sector prioritize safety and environmental sustainability in their operations. They are at the forefront of developing advanced technologies, enhancing reactor designs, and implementing stringent safety measures. As the nation moves toward its net-zero emissions target, the nuclear sector, with its low carbon footprint, will continue to be a vital component of the UK’s energy mix.

Approved Nuclear Supplier

In recent years, Unique Polishing has become an approved supplier to a number of the major nuclear sites across the UK, building a strong reputation for delivering onsite metal treatment, metal polishing and inspection services. Pickling and passivation play a pivotal role in our nuclear service offering as it is a mandatory process for steel used or stored within nuclear power plants.

In addition to onsite services, Unique Polishing has dedicated facilities for pickling and passivation, bead blasting and metal polishing, including a pickling bath utilised exclusively for nuclear projects, with approved procedures for all the major nuclear projects which are currently being constructed throughout the UK. Over 30 years expert knowledge is cemented by BSI UKAS ISO 9001 accreditation to ensure professional, reliable services customers can trust.

For more information on our pickling and passivation capabilities, or for a quotation, contact our team today.