skip to main content
Sellafield Dragon Waste Project Win for Penny Nuclear

Sellafield Dragon Waste Project Win for Penny Nuclear

Following the announcement of a record year in turnover, Penny Hydraulics are delighted to announce that their Nuclear division

Following the announcement of a record year in turnover, Penny Hydraulics are delighted to announce that their Nuclear division, Penny Nuclear, has just won another contract worth over £370,000 for the nuclear fuel reprocessing and decommissioning company Sellafield Ltd.

The primary mission at Sellafield Ltd is the accelerated clean-up of legacy facilities. On behalf of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and Magnox Ltd Sellafield intend to receive material at the Sellafield site in Cumbria for long term safe storage. The project to enable this activity is known as the Dragon Waste Project.

The Dragon Waste Project involves the receipt at Sellafield of waste material in licensed transport containers for encapsulation and long term storage.

Sellafield have chosen Penny Nuclear to handle all of the lifting equipment required to undertake the various lifting procedures for the Dragon Project, as well as the storage of that equipment in the form of designated park stands. Breaking it down, Penny Nuclear are responsible for the supply of a fully substantiated detailed design package, manufacture, CE Marking and testing of the items and equipment.

Utilising the latest 3D Computer Aided Design (CAD) software, Penny Nuclear was able to offer a model of the entire project on-screen. This gave the advantage of being certain the design was suitable for the job before reaching the manufacturing or testing stage, as well as providing more effective communication tools than 2D design when speaking to the project contacts at Sellafield.

Working remotely, Penny Nuclear reviewed and developed Sellafield’s proposed solutions, starting at the high-level design proposal drawing phase, different ideas were communicated and discussed, thereby streamlining the decision process and allowing the detailed design to commence early. The software used allowed for other parties’ models to be incorporated into the designs, giving Sellafield reassurance that all systems interfaced correctly, thereby minimising project risk.

Designs were then progressed to manufacture and animations were produced for stakeholder management and marketing purposes. Designs are kept securely behind the Penny Nuclear server’s firewall and are backed up daily, giving Sellafield the reassurance that nothing will be lost.

With dedicated fabrication bays within the Penny Hydraulics factory, all of Penny Nuclear’s welders are coded to the latest British Standards and follow approved Weld Procedure Specifications, meaning all welds on the project are to the highest quality.

In-house capabilities Penny Nuclear are using for this project include profiling, turning, boring and milling. CNC machining, large-scale milling and other precision services have been offered through the companies robust local supply chain. All sub-contracted items are rigorously inspected before being released for use, as well as the sub-contractors meeting our full quality assurance requirements.

The project which is now well underway, is actually due to be completed ahead of schedule. By streamlining the design, the company has been able to reduce the project lead time and the project risk. The major item to be manufactured is a SWL 25 tonne Transport Package Lifting Beam, which is to be proof load tested to 50 tonnes, but designed to remain safe a 75 tonnes (3x SWL). This beam is in fact the largest SWL item the company has produced to date.

Even in advance of completion, the project has had many positive impacts on Penny Nuclear. Simon Pykett, General Manager comments, “We’ve invested in new equipment to allow us to deliver the contract to the highest standard and we’re embedding working practices developed through delivering this contract into the rest of the business, such as working in line with BS EN ISO 3834 on the fabrication of the lifting beams. We have also upskilled the workforce which is allowing us to continue developing the business in further areas.”

As a firm supporter of businesses in the local community for the last 37 years, Penny Nuclear are proud to be supporting the local SME supply chain and helping them to also gain experience within the nuclear sector.

Penny Nuclear designs and manufactures lifting equipment, mechanical handling solutions and hydraulic systems for all stages of the nuclear plant lifecycle and nuclear fuel cycle. Whether it is for decommissioning, generating, research or new build sites, they have the knowledge and experience to provide customers with robust, cost-effective solutions within extremely competitive lead times.

The majority of nuclear products are designed and manufactured bespoke, in order to fulfil activity specific customer requirements, yet sometimes our serial production products may be more than suitable for the customers’ needs. All projects are carried out under detailed consultancy with the customer, and draw upon Penny Hydraulics Ltd ( vast experience of providing mechanical handling equipment to various industries.

Subscribe to our mailing list