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Construction firm SNC-Lavalin said Friday it has won a contract from U.S.-based Xcel Energy to replace the steam generators at the Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant in Minnesota.

Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

SNC-Lavalin's nuclear division had initially conducted a removal study for Prairie Island's steam generators, which have been in service since 1974.

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SNC said engineering and procurement activities have begun for the project, with plans to perform some work during the next unit outage set for 2011. Steam generator replacements will take place during an outage period in late 2013.

"This contract is indicative of SNC-Lavalin's growing market share in the nuclear power sector and its ability to work with various nuclear technologies," Ron Moleschi, vice-president of SNC-Lavalin's nuclear division said in a statement.

"It also further demonstrates our proven capabilities in executing projects in the U.S."

SNC-Lavalin, which had 21,300 employees at the end of 2008, has offices across Canada and in more than 35 other countries. The Montreal company is one of the biggest engineering and construction companies in the world and a major player in the ownership of infrastructure and in operations and maintenance services.



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