BWX Technologies Inc

BWX Technologies (“BWXT”) formerly known as Babcock & Wilcox Company is involved in the Trident programme for the US and UK navies. It is also connected to tritium production for the US nuclear weapons arsenal. 

Company profile

BWX Technologies (“BWXT”), formerly known as Babcock & Wilcox Company, supplies nuclear components and fuel to the US government, technical and management services to national nuclear security sites, and supplies components and services for the commercial nuclear power industry.[i]

In the financial year ending 31 December 2018, BWXT reported revenues of US$ 1.8 billion (€ 1.59 billion), resulting in a net income of US$ 227.0 million (€ 201.7 million).[ii]

Stock exchange listing : NYSE: BWXT

Contact

BWX Technologies Inc. Corporate Headquarters
800 Main Street
Lynchburg, VA 24504
USA
+1.434.522.3800

Website: https://www.bwxt.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BWXTech/
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/bwx-technologies?trk=biz-companies-cyf
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BWXTech
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSgCJ1E5p9alNfmbF_bGFWg

 


Nuclear weapons

BWXT is involved in uranium processing and other site-specific services for the US nuclear arsenal.[iii] BWX Technologies is also involved in environmental site restoration, providing naval nuclear reactor fuel and services for the US Navy, though that falls outside the scope of this report.[iv]

Trident II (D5)

In 2017, BWXT was awarded a US$ 76 million (€ 70.8 million) contract to manufacture additional Common Missile Compartment (CMC) tube assemblies for the US Navy’s Columbia Class and the UK Navy’s Dreadnought Class nuclear submarines. The tubes are specifically designed to enable the launch of Trident II (D5) missiles from these submarines. According to BWXT this is the third such contract they’ve received, and they expect to conclude work in 2021.[v] Previously, the tubes would be purchased only when the submarines were nearly complete, but this contract agreement is designed to minimize overall production time by having the tubes on hand to slot into the subs at the appropriate moments.[vi]

Tritium production

In September 2018 the US National Nuclear Security Administration awarded a US$ 505 million (€ 427.5 million) contract for the period 2019-2025 to a subsidiary of BWX Technologies called Nuclear Fuel Services, Inc. for down-blending 20.2 metric tons of highly enriched uranium (HEU) to produce low enriched uranium (LEU).[vii] According to the US National Nuclear Security Administration this process enables the “production of tritium, a key component of the US nuclear weapons stockpile” and is part of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s effort to “provide a reliable and economical source of unobligated enriched uranium”, free from peaceful use restrictions, until at least 2025. Work will be carried out at the Tennessee Valley Authority.[viii] Once the materials are downblended, tritium extraction takes place at the Savannah River Site.[ix]

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

LLNL plays an important role in the research, design, development and production of nuclear weapons,[x] including the life extension program of the B61 nuclear bomb[xi] and of the W80-1 nuclear warhead for air-launched cruise missiles.[xii]

The Lawrence Livermore National Security partnership includes BWX Technologies, Battelle[xiii] and Texas A&M University.[xiv] The current contract for LLNL was awarded in 2007 and runs through September 2023.[xv] The maximum possible fee to be collected under the contract is US$ 45.5 million (€ 37.6 million) a year.[xvi] The US National Nuclear Security Administration was criticised for renewing lucrative deals at LLNL despite poor performance of the contractors.[xvii]

[last updated 13 May 2019]

The following companies are profiled in the latest report.

In some nuclear-armed states – in particular the United States, the United Kingdom and France – private companies are hired by governments to carry out work on maintaining and modernising nuclear arsenals.

This report looks at the companies most heavily involved in the nuclear weapon industry. The contracts these companies have with nuclear armed countries are for materials and services to keep nuclear weapons in their arsenals. The companies described are substantially involved in the nuclear weapons programmes of the United States, the United Kingdom, France, or India and are themselves based in France, India, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States.

In other nuclear-armed countries –Russia, China, Pakistan and North Korea – the maintenance and modernization of nuclear forces is carried out primarily or exclusively by government agencies.

Methodology

The nuclear weapon producers identified were selected on the basis of a predetermined set of criteria.
– Information on investments is publicly available.
– The company is directly involved in the development, testing, production, maintenance or trade of nuclear weapons related technology, parts, products or services.
– The company’s involvement is related to warheads, or to delivery systems such as missiles, that are specifically developed for nuclear tasks. This includes technology that is designed for ‘dual use’ (military and civilian) but excludes technology that is not designed for, but can be used in nuclear warfare. It does not include delivery platforms such as bombers and submarines.

State owned or controlled nuclear industries are outside the scope of this research, as are companies not publicly listed. Our research uncovered a number of Universities involved in nuclear weapons programmes, but these are also outside the scope of the report.

The list of nuclear weapon producers investigated was compiled through a wide variety of sources, including financial institution exclusion lists, civil society reports, media reports, etc. Additional details on the contracts and components is on the website.
We welcome information at any time about possible nuclear weapon producing companies to investigate.