Our 20 years

Our story began 20 years ago, but we come from a time of pioneers.
In 1999 we took the baton of a challenge threw down by a group of young Italian physicists in the 1930s: the via Panisperna boys. In 1942, the studies carried out by those boys, led by Enrico Fermi, allowed the improvement of the first nuclear reactor in the world.
Based on this extraordinary experience, Italy, between the late 1950s and early 1960s, built 3 nuclear power plants, building the first and most powerful European plant of the time and, thus, becoming the third International Power in the civil nuclear sector. The plants became 4 in 1981 but, following Chernobyl accident occurred in 1986 and the referendum on repeal the following year, the experience of Italian nuclear power ended permanently.
In 1999, Italy decided to undertake a new ground-breaking operation, starting the decommissioning of the 4 plants and becoming a forerunner in the field of nuclear decommissioning. It was a matter of dismantling systems that had not been designed for their future decommissioning. Once again, it was a challenge that no one had faced before. This is how Sogin was created, a Company to which Italians entrusted the safe maintenance and decommissioning of nuclear power plants and the management of their radioactive waste.
At the starting gate of this adventure we were only 591. Someone felt the burden of dismantling their workplaces; many others felt the enthusiasm of a story that still had to be written; everyone felt the responsibility of being the heirs the Panisperna boys, from whom everything had started. Thenceforth, we are the keepers of unique know-how and skills, which guarantee the nuclear safety of Italians. For this reason, over time, the country has entrusted us with the decommissioning of 6 other plants, bringing to 10 the nuclear plants that we have pledged to decommission.
Since 2004, thanks to Nucleco, we have dealt with the management of radioactive waste produced by nuclear medicine, industry and research. We are at the forefront of the remediation of contaminated sites, such as that of Statte in the province of Taranto, where we are securing 3,500 radioactive drums. Furthermore, we work to create the National Deposit, the definitive solution for the safe management of all Italian radioactive waste. On this trip, which began at the end of last century, we have experienced successes and setbacks, but we have never stopped. And so, we have managed to turn our mistakes into a precious experience. With this experience, we participate in projects and initiatives of nuclear decommissioning and radioactive waste management in 18 countries, with two operating facilities abroad, in Moscow and Bratislava. Our decommissioning program was the first to be subject to an independent review by the International Atomic Energy Agency and currently represent a benchmark for those countries that are starting the dismantling of their nuclear plants. Over these 20 years, our community has grown, diversified and has made way to a new generation of men and women dedicated to protecting the security for the future. Today, in 13 offices in Italy and abroad, 1,155 people deal with the Italian historical nuclear legacy, to ensure Italian citizens the possibility to enjoy a Country with no radiological constraints. We do this by paying close attention to the sustainability of our projects. Thanks to the treatment and decontamination techniques that we use, we are able to recover approximately 90% of the dismantled materials. Thus, we demonstrate that, even in a difficult sector such as nuclear decommissioning, it is possible to achieve best practices of circular economy. Our mission is far from being over. But even if our path has proved to be more difficult and tortuous than we expected, our determination and our commitment remain unchanged.


The voice of our colleagues

137 colleagues experienced the birth of Sogin and since then, they have participated in its growth. Through a short testimony of 8 of them, they shared with us a small part of their experience.