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Network services provider Telent Technology Services has been awarded a six-year contract to run IT and communications (ICT) infrastructure at the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant, currently under construction in Somerset.
The agreement will see Telent design, install and commission the ICT system for the power station – the first nuclear plant to be built in the UK in over 25 years. This will include a dual datacentre infrastructure, and fixed and wireless networks between about 150 buildings, supporting a site-wide unified communications (UC) service.
It will also support a multi-service, on-site radio network that will integrate with the Emergency Services Network (ESN), closed-circuit TV, a public address and voice alarm system, integrated command and communications, and site-wide TV distribution.
“Through our development of new nuclear power stations in the UK, we remain committed to boosting UK industrial capacity at both the regional and national level,” said Hinkley Point C supply chain director Jean-Pierre West. “I am pleased to have the support of Telent in delivering the vital communications and IT infrastructure the new power station will need.”
Telent CEO Mark Plato added: “This new contract reflects our successful track record in providing critical communications solutions in a range of diverse and sensitive environments. At Hinkley Point C, we will be able to utilise our experience and expertise from right across the company and channel it into this immensely sizable national project.”
EDF said Telent stood out during the tender process by demonstrating a collaborative and flexible approach to ensure its needs would be met, and its ability to “work across a broad range of technologies using its own directly employed engineering teams”.
It will work alongside a number of other successful contract bidders on the project, including those for small power and lighting, fire and hydrogen detection, and physical and electronic security.
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The controversial Hinkley Point C power plant, which has been dogged by delays, cost overruns and technical concerns throughout the planning, is set to be operational by 2025. Its backers say that when complete, it will generate about 7% of the UK’s electricity needs, powering six million homes and creating more than 25,000 jobs in southwest England.
“This project is going to provide a major boost to the economy and we expect to create a number of apprenticeships and graduate roles in the Bristol and Somerset areas, adding to our current footprint in the South West through a number of existing contracts,” said Plato.
“We hope to work with local colleges to provide training for jobs that will not be just short-term opportunities. These will be sustainable jobs that will benefit the local economy and local residents well into the future.”