Atkins – a member of SNC-Lavalin Group – has been awarded two collaboration contracts by the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) to support its Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP) programme – a flagship project to design and build a prototype fusion power plant in the UK.
The STEP Cost Modelling contract, and the STEP Siting and Development contract – both running for three years – position Atkins as an exclusive supplier of services relating to these two contracts, as the UKAEA pushes ahead with plans to have the prototype powerplant operational in the 2040s.
The Siting and Development contract, delivered by Atkins with supply chain partner Savills, will support UKAEA in assessing potential sites in the UK for the STEP plant and in planning site development.
Lee Patrick, UKAEA Client Manager, Nuclear & Power, at Atkins said: “Through these partnerships, we will play a crucial role in helping realise commercial fusion energy and strengthen the UK’s position as a global fusion leader.
“Programmes like this are vital in developing complex, low carbon, commercial fusion technology as we aim to reach Net Zero targets by 2050 and beyond, and lead to fusion’s potential as a safe, limitless and environmentally responsible energy source.”
Atkins supports UKAEA across its major programmes through its position as an Engineering Design Services (EDS) framework supplier. Atkins brings extensive experience in large nuclear new build projects, including international fusion science through its role as architect engineer for ITER within the Engage consortium. Successful commercialisation of nuclear fusion will contribute towards clean and sustainable global energy supplies whilst presenting export opportunities to UK companies.