USEC And DOE Continued To Fund American Centrifuge Activities

USEC recently announced the start of the Lead Cascade of production-ready AC100 centrifuge machines in a commercial-plant configuration in Piketon, Ohio

 - By Linton Levy  -

USEC Inc. and the Department of Energy (DOE) have announced an agreement to provide $45 million in funding to USEC to fund on-going American Centrifuge technology demonstration and manufacturing activities.  USEC will match the DOE funding on a 50-50 cost-share basis.  The work will support approximately 355 highly skilled jobs, primarily in Ohio, Tennessee, and West Virginia.

USEC recently announced the start of the Lead Cascade of production-ready AC100 centrifuge machines in a commercial-plant configuration in Piketon, Ohio.  The Company has operated centrifuges for more than 338,000 machine hours during the Lead Cascade testing program, which includes both prototype machines and the AC100 series machines. The funding under the cost-share cooperative agreement supports increased operational run-time of the Lead Cascade as well as production of additional machines by USEC's manufacturers and rotor process improvement activities in preparation for full, high-rate production.

"We appreciate DOE's vote of confidence in the American Centrifuge technology," said USEC President and CEO John K. Welch.  "We have made significant progress and continue to work hard to address the recommendations of DOE's independent engineer.  This funding will boost those efforts and preserve approximately 355 jobs dedicated to centrifuge machine manufacturing and operation of the American Centrifuge machines. These activities will give us valuable operational data and experience as we prepare to update our loan guarantee application."

Under terms of the agreement, DOE will provide financial support for this work by taking the disposal obligation for a limited quantity of depleted uranium tails from USEC, releasing $45 million in cash for investment in American Centrifuge demonstration that USEC had otherwise committed to future tails disposition obligations.

USEC will match the $45 million, for a total investment of $90 million.

USEC Inc., a global energy company, is a leading supplier of enriched uranium fuel for commercial nuclear power plants. 

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