Centrus Energy Corp. is a trusted supplier of enriched uranium fuel for a growing fleet of international and domestic commercial nuclear power plants. Centrus is working to deploy the American Centrifuge technology for commercial needs and to support U.S. energy and national security.
- Working to deploy the American Centrifuge, Centrus’ next generation uranium enrichment technology
- Listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "LEU"
- More than 800 employees currently work at our four U.S. locations.
- Headquartered in Bethesda, MD
Enriched Uranium for Nuclear Fuel
Centrus supplies low enriched uranium to commercial utilities to fuel in nuclear reactors worldwide. Low enriched uranium is a key component of the fuel used by nuclear power plants to generate electricity.
Uranium enrichment for commercial nuclear reactors began in the 1960s, when the U.S. government shifted some of its enrichment capacity from military to civilian use. In the early 1990s, Centrus’ predecessor was created as a government corporation in order to prepare the government’s uranium enrichment operation for sale to the private sector. Privatization was completed in July 1998. As an investor-owned company, Centrus continues a 50-year tradition of reliability: all customer shipments have been made on time and within specification.
Centrus’ business is in a state of significant transition as it seeks to reposition its enrichment business for long term success. Centrus has historically produced or acquired low enriched uranium from two principal sources: U.S. enrichment facilities and uranium downblended from nuclear weapons. Centrus will be a significantly smaller company as it transitions to making sales from its existing inventory, from purchases of low enriched uranium from Russia and from other potential sources of supply.
Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant
Centrus previously produced about half of its supply at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant. Centrus ceased enrichment at Paducah in 2013 and is working to transition the site back to the Department of Energy in October 2014.
Between 1995 and 2013, Centrus purchased about one-half of its low enriched uranium supply under a contract with Russia through the Megatons to Megawatts program, a 20-year, commercially funded nuclear nonproliferation initiative of the U.S. and Russian governments. This unique program, which ended in 2013, recycled 500 metric tons of weapons-grade uranium taken from dismantled Russian nuclear warheads (the equivalent of 20,000 warheads) into low enriched uranium used by Centrus’ customers to generate electricity. Centrus completed its purchases under the program in 2013 and will continue to sell this material from its inventory.
Going forward, Centrus’ supply of low enriched uranium from the Megatons to Megawatts program will be replaced by purchases under a 10-year commercial agreement with Russia for commercially produced low enriched uranium. Purchase quantities under this commercial agreement will be about half the level under the Megatons to Megawatts program. This contract runs through 2022.
The American Centrifuge
Centrus continues to take steps to maintain its options to commercially deploy the American Centrifuge technology as a long-term, direct source of domestic enrichment production to support the long-term viability of the Company's LEU business. Centrus is working to deploy the technology at the American Centrifuge Plant in Piketon, Ohio.
The American Centrifuge is a disciplined evolution of classified U.S. centrifuge technology originally developed by the U.S. Department of Energy. Centrus has improved the technology through advanced materials, updated electronics and design enhancements based on highly advanced computer modeling capabilities.
Centrus has confirmed the technical readiness of the American Centrifuge technology through a cooperative cost-sharing research, development and demonstration program with DOE. The RD&D program supported building, installing, operating, and testing commercial plant support systems and a 120-machine cascade that would be incorporated in the commercial plant. Maintaining a U.S. enrichment capability is critical to meeting future national security, energy security and nonproliferation objectives.
Following the completion of the RD&D program, DOE instructed UT-Battelle, the management and operating contractor for Oak Ridge National Laboratory, to assist in developing a path forward for achieving a reliable and economic domestic uranium enrichment capability that promotes private sector deployment and that supports national security purposes. Pursuant to those instructions, ORNL chose to subcontract with Centrus.
Centrus signed the American Centrifuge Technology Demonstration and Operations Agreement with UT-Battelle for continued research, development and demonstration of the American Centrifuge technology in furtherance of DOE’s national security objectives. The ACTDO Agreement is a firm fixed-price contract that provides for continued cascade operations and the continuation of core American Centrifuge research and technology activities and the furnishing of related reports to ORNL.
In parallel, Centrus has been working to position itself financially to move forward as a stronger sponsor of the American Centrifuge project. However, current enrichment market conditions do not support a viable business plan for obtaining the capital needed for the commercialization of the American Centrifuge project.