The 2017 award winners have been announced at the annual NDA Estate Supply Chain Event.
The annual awards recognise the vital contribution of suppliers to the UK’s nuclear clean-up mission and were among the highlights of the NDA Estate Supply Chain Event, held at EventCity on 2 November.
Open to suppliers of all sizes, entries were submitted in the following categories:
- skills and capacity development
- technology innovation implementation
In addition to the above, a Minister’s award was selected from all of the individual entries.
Ron Gorham, the NDA’s Head of Supply Chain optimisation and SME Champion, who chaired the judging panel, said:
Our suppliers play a critical role in delivering timely, cost-effective decommissioning across our sites, and we are delighted to acknowledge their vital contribution.
The standard of entries this year was again extremely high, and the judges and I were particularly pleased with the dedication, creativity and determination shown from companies large and small.
These awards celebrate the commitment of our supply chain and the value they bring on a daily basis, and highlight that the UK industry is uniquely positioned to continue to be successful, not just at home but also abroad.
Capability and Capacity Award
This skills award recognises that capability and capacity in the supply chain are important to support projects and programmes, both now and in the future. The award was aimed at suppliers who may have:
- developed employee skills
- supported the development of supply chain partners
- created opportunities to bring people into the workplace
- developed skills and enabled an environment where differences are valued
Winner: University of Cumbria - Project Academy for Sellafield Ltd
The Academy’s vision was to create a centre of excellence for the development of project skills delivery. The Academy has:
- trained over 600 students
- created 8 new supply chain jobs
The Academy is supporting other sectors such as health, construction, third sector and education, as well as delivering a significant cost saving for courses to Sellafield Ltd.
This approach will enable Sellafield Ltd to create the capacity to deliver the projects needed for site decommissioning by providing people with education, training and professional qualifications.
Winner: Nuclear AMRC and Rolls-Royce - Delivering Civil Nuclear Sharing in Growth Programme
The 4-year programme focused on developing the UK nuclear manufacturing supply chain to win work at home and overseas.
Managed by Rolls-Royce on behalf of Nuclear AMRC, the programme was part-funded by the government’s Regional Growth Fund.
It was also the first of its kind for the UK nuclear sector. Bringing together government, industry and academia, the £multi-million support package covers:
- strategy and finance
- winning business
- business management
- supply chain management
- value improvement
- manufacturing capacity
- lean production
- leadership development
- employee development
Participating companies have won over £437 million of contracts, securing 5,232 UK jobs and achieving £37.4 million of private sector investment.
Technology Innovation Implementation with Tangible Benefits to an SLC
This award recognises both the innovation and collaboration required to take technology or innovation through to successful implementation at a Site Licence Company.
Winner: Nuvia Ltd - Separation Area Head End Stack Dismantling, Sellafield site
The aim of the project is to dismantle the 61m high separation area head end stack from the existing building at Sellafield, and remove a high-risk structure from a potentially hazardous area. Due to the nature of facilities surrounding the stack, an alternative approach to demolition was required.
Nuvia and Sellafield Ltd worked with Delta International to modify their self-climbing platform, which had been used on conventional industrial sites but never on a nuclear facility. The self-climbing platform will provide a safe working area, with fewer workers required to dismantle the stack.
Highly Commended: Underwater Construction Corporation UK Ltd - Use of divers in spent fuel ponds
Specialist divers were used in spent fuel ponds to disassemble, size reduce, and package for removal of underwater equipment and furniture, as well as the collection of sludge and debris prior to draining the pond in preparation for care and maintenance.
The technique is considered more efficient than traditional methods such as using remote tooling or remotely operated vehicles. The water acts as shielding, reducing doses accrued for the team. This approach was commissioned by Magnox at the Dungeness A site, with UCC performing a total of 265 safe dives in 2 ponds from late 2016 to 2017.
This year we again looked at collaboration in its widest form. This award was open to suppliers and organisations who have worked collaboratively within the supply chain.
Winner: Carillion, Kier, Morgan Sindall, G & AM Lawson, Amec Foster Wheeler, Balfour Beatty, Costain, M+W Group - People Plant Interface, The Segregation Hierarchy
A team of Sellafield supply chain safety managers worked to develop new standardised guidance, training, material and mentoring to be implemented across the Projects Delivery Directorate supply chain at Sellafield.
Since March 2017, over 1,000 people from 36 companies have been trained, with an accumulative pass rate of 99%.
Since its inception, the collaboration has expanded to include local SMEs who are in a position to deliver the training themselves. This project is helping to prevent incidents and keep people safe, contributing to delivery of the hazard and risk programme on schedule. It has also led to improved supplier relationships and supply chain safety performance, as well as saving time and cost on training.
Highly commended: James Fisher Nuclear Ltd, WYG, Sellafield Ltd - Reduced cost, schedule and risk building inspections
The successful deployment of UAVs at Sellafield has improved the quality and quantity of data available to assess the structural integrity of buildings, and inform decommissioning strategies. This required development of procedures to overcome stakeholder concerns whilst operating in the most sensitive areas.
The approach is rapid and reduces both the cost and programme impact, and removes working at height risks when compared to traditional techniques. The impact is maximised by the close and collaborative team working between the UAV pilots and the building integrity specialist to ensure that the images are suitable, while additional images can be requested without increasing cost or schedule.
An award for companies who have successfully exported overseas, from concepts, products and services originally conceived or implemented in the NDA estate.
Winner: Oxford Technologies Ltd - Fuel Debris Retrieval Project, Fukushima Daiichi
Oxford Technologies is looking at aspects of the Fukushima Daiichi fuel debris removal project. This includes investigation of reactor internals, sampling of fuel debris for analysis and fuel debris removal. Oxford Technologies is developing the access robotic device and a range of tools based on the proven approach in decommissioning projects at Sellafield and Dounreay. The relationship developed through exchanges between the NDA/ NDF, Sellafield/Tepco highlighting Oxford Technologies’ work in the UK, notably at Dounreay’s shaft and silo project, and Sellafield’s FGMSP.
The Minister’s Award recognises the great value, flexibility and innovation that SMEs bring to the mission.
Winner: BICO Ltd
Extract from testimony:
The reactivity of BICO to embrace a problem or challenge was like a breath of fresh air. During dress rehearsals and on several occasions where a problem was highlighted, BICO would attend within a couple of hours to understand the issue, the tool would be taken away, a modified component would be manufactured, assembled and then returned to the operations team. Their enthusiasm and dedication to the project is to be commended.
Highly Commended: JGC Engineering & Technical Services Ltd
Extract from testimony:
The implementation programme for the works was extremely challenging as it has to be designed, installed and commissioned before the end of 2017. The collaboration of JGC and Jacobs (Jacobs acting as sub-contractor) provided the project team with the confidence that they were best placed to deliver this challenging programme. There have been several challenges during the life of the project but with the ‘can do’ approach from all parties, two of the three project milestones have been met with the last two being completed two months early.