General Electric Hitachi Nuclear Energy, a subsidiary of General Electric Company and partially owned by Hitachi, has settled a dispute which alleged that it employees made false statements and claims to the Department of Energy and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission about the steam dryer of the advanced nuclear Economic Simplified Boiling-Water Reactor (ESBWR) design. In order to resolve the allegations, GE Hitachi will pay $2.7 million as part of the agreement.
The dispute arose after a whistleblower lawsuit was filed under the False Claims Act by an employee named LeRay Dandy, who formerly worked for GE Hitachi until he resigned on January 4th, 2013.
For five years, between 2007 and 2012, GE Hitachi received funds from the Department of Energy to cover up to have of the costs related to development, engineering, and design certification for the advanced nuclear ESBWR.
The government contends that GE Hitachi concealed known flaws in the steam dryer and its analysis and falsely testified that it had properly analyzed the steam dryer.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is still reviewing the GE Hitachi application and has not yet made a determination on the certification of the ESBWR design.
In March of 2013, GE Hitachi sued LeRay Dandy, claiming that he violated a confidentiality agreement.
Source: Department of Justice
Source: Star News Online