On 3 November 2016, the collaborative R&D project LaserSnake2 won the 2016 Nuclear Decommissioning Authority award for Technology/Innovation Implementation at an event in Manchester, attended by over 2000 people.
TWI has recently completed the demonstration phase of the project. After two years of trials and planning, permission was given to take the new, long reach snake-arm robot (developed in the project by OC Robotics) and combine it with cutting techniques developed by TWI, ULO Optics, and Laser Optical Engineering, to reduce the size of a large radioactive stainless steel dissolver vessel.
The vessel weighed 5 tonnes and consisted of an inner shell 32 mm thick separated from an outer shell 12 mm thick, by a gap of 40 mm. Paul Hilton will describe the results of this project in more detail at the ILAS conference in March next year.