Office for Nuclear Regulation

Compliance inspection of Licence Condition 26 (Control and Supervision of Operations)

Executive summary

Purpose of Intervention

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) undertakes all regulatory interventions with the Aldermaston nuclear site licensee, AWE plc (AWE) against a strategy defined by the ONR Weapons sub-Division. In accordance with that strategy, a Licence Condition (LC) compliance inspection was undertaken on the Uranium Technology Centre (UTC), as planned, in December 2020. 

The purpose of the intervention was for the ONR to inspect and determine the adequacy of implementation by AWE, as the licensee, of its formal arrangements for compliance with LC 26 (Control and Supervision of Operations) for the Product Inventory Verification (PIV) process.

Interventions Carried Out by ONR

The intervention focussed on the people, process and plant that AWE UTC has in place to comply with its LC 26 arrangements and was undertaken via desktop discussions and facility inspection. This included semi-structured interviews with relevant AWE personnel; sampled review of relevant documents and records; and inspection of plant/equipment.

The intervention was performed in line with ONR's guidance requirements (as described in our technical inspection guides) in the areas inspected.

The AWE UTC Internal Regulator (IR) supported ONR during the inspection.

Explanation of Judgement if Safety System Not Judged to be Adequate

Not applicable - this was not a system-based inspection therefore, no judgement in this regard was made.

Key Findings, Inspector's Opinions and Reasons for Judgements Made

Based on the evidence sampled against AWE’s LC 26 arrangements and ONR’s TIG NS-INSP-GD-028, AWE adequately demonstrated that Control and Supervision of Operations was being carried out to the required standard for the PIV operations, noting that in accordance with ONR Guide ONR-INSP-GD-064: 

Conclusion of Intervention

I consider that, on the basis of evidence sampled at the time of this inspection, AWE has implemented adequately its arrangements for compliance with LC 26 for PIV operations. I therefore consider that an inspection rating of Green (No Formal Action) is merited, in accordance with ONR Guide ONR-INSP-GD-064, where relevant good practice was generally met and no significant shortfalls were identified in the delivery of safety functions.