International property and construction consultancy Gleeds has been commissioned via Perfect Circle to deliver procurement, commercial, and cost management services to the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority’s (UKAEA) ground-breaking Spherical Tokamak for Energy Production (STEP) programme.
STEP is an ambitious programme to design and construct the UK’s first prototype fusion power plant.
Perfect Circle was appointed to support STEP by onboarding partners who will engineer and construct the prototype fusion energy plant.
The plant will be located at the West Burton power station site in Nottinghamshire and looks to demonstrate the viability of fusion energy as an electricity source.
Gleeds, as one of Perfect Circle’s founding partners, will initially be responsible for providing comprehensive procurement services to support the selection and on-boarding of STEP’s whole plant partners through a complex procurement process.
‘Sustainable, low-cost energy’
Andy Ellis, global head of energy at Gleeds, said: “Gleeds is delighted to support the UKAEA STEP programme in delivering its prototype fusion energy plant.
“This is an incredibly exciting project; not only does it demonstrate viable net energy production, but it also represents an important opportunity for the UK to maintain its role as world leader in fusion technology.
“Fusion will play a hugely important role within the UK clean energy transition as we seek clean, sustainable, low-cost energy sources to replace fossil fuels, and has the potential to generate almost limitless clean energy for future generations.
“I’m pleased that Gleeds’ extensive expertise in the energy sector has secured us a place on the team to support the procurement of future partners.”
Perfect Circle and Gleeds’ work on the project will be supported and accelerated through the SCAPE Consultancy framework, which helps to drive collaboration, efficiency, time and cost-savings.
Sarah Palmer, STEP Strategic Procurement Manager, said: “We’re pleased to be working with Gleeds in support of the highly complex procurement of whole plant partners that will work with us through design and construction of the prototype plant.
“Fusion energy has great potential to deliver safe, sustainable, low carbon energy for generations to come. It is sometimes described as the ultimate energy source and is based on the same processes that power the sun and stars.”
Victoria Brambini, managing director of Perfect Circle, added: “I’m delighted that our founding partner Gleeds will be delivering this truly ambitious scheme for the UKAEA.
“The Government-backed STEP programme will bring the site of this former coal-fired power station back to life, creating thousands of jobs during construction and operation, and undoubtably attracting other high-tech industries to Nottinghamshire in the process.”
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