European Company for the Chemical Processing of Irradiated Fuels01 December 1957 (Mol [Belgium]) - 1975 (Mol [Belgium])
Société européenne pour le traitement chimique des combustibles irradiés
The European Company for the Chemical Processing of Irradiated Fuels (usually known as Eurochemic Company) was the result of an international initiative developed through the European Nuclear Energy Agency (ENEA). The Company has as its object to carry out research on industrial activity connected with the processing of irradiated fuels and the use of products arising from this processing, to contribute to the training of specialists in this field and thus to promote the production for peaceful uses of nuclear energy by Western European countries. Eurochemic was created by an international convention signed in December 1957 by thirteen Member countries of ENEA and came into existence officially at the end of July 1959, once it was officially ratified.
Eurochemic carried out a highly innovative research programme at its site at Mol in Belgium, trained large numbers of specialists, and built an industrial pilot plant, commissioned in 1966, to process a wide variety of fuel types. Eurochemic facilitated the sharing of the technology of spent fuel recycling among advanced countries in Western Europe, and reprocessed fuels from its member countries’ reactors in its own plant.
However, given the small size of this plant, and the situation of the reprocessing market where Eurochemic found itself competing with national reprocessing projects, it became impossible for the joint undertaking to achieve its original objective, which had been to serve as the nucleus of a European reprocessing industry, and operations therefore came to an end in 1975.