May 21, 2012
- Backed by broad support from the U.S. electric power industry and elected officials, NuScale Power LLC has submitted its proposal to participate in a U.S. Department of Energy program to accelerate the deployment of small modular reactors.
NuScale has developed a break-through technology for building safer, smaller, scalable nuclear power plants. Using proven light water reactor technology, the NuScale reactor is cooled by natural circulation, is entirely self-contained and installed underwater and underground to maximize safety.
“Our approach offers DOE a plant with innovative new safety features and true scalability, which enable it to achieve a wide range of outputs to meet the power demands of individual utilities,” asserted Paul Lorenzini, chief executive officer of NuScale. “We are grateful that our government is helping American companies recapture the technological lead in the international nuclear power industry. NuScale’s design will do just that.
“NuScale is a 100 percent American-owned company and we are committed to maximizing the use of American manufacturers to make the components for NuScale power plants,” said Lorenzini. “NuScale’s design development began in 2000 under a DOE-funded research program. Its design reflects 12 years of evolution and refinement, and has been validated through comprehensive testing in a one-third scale prototype test facility, which began operating in 2003. To date we have invested nearly $100 million in private funds in commercializing the NuScale technology,” he said. “The recent entry into the SMR market by other companies demonstrates the importance of this new breed of nuclear plant to the worldwide market."
NuScale’s proposal has broad support from prospective customers, economic development organizations and elected officials from across the U.S. As part of the NuHub economic development organization, South Carolina Gas & Electric, a division of SCANA, has agreed to lead the formation of a consortium to license and operate the first NuScale plant at the Savannah River Site.
“South Carolina Electric & Gas Company is pleased to be partnering with NuScale to deploy a small, modular reactor at the Savannah River Site,” said Stephen A. Byrne, president generation and transmission and chief operating officer. “NuScale’s size, modularity and scalability make it adaptable to fit multiple potential applications. Additionally, the NuScale design appears to deal well with severe external events like the one at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan.”
NuScale was the first US-based SMR vendor to begin discussions with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and has been engaged in pre-application discussions since 2008. The company is on schedule to allow the first plant using its technology to begin commercial operation within the next decade.
A Customer Advisory Board formed in 2008, and now comprised of 17 utilities and organizations, is actively guiding NuScale in the commercialization of its technology. Its membership includes the operators of more than one-half of the 104 operating U.S. nuclear power plants and organizations representing all of the U.S. cooperatively-owned utilities.
The NuScale design approach also received strong endorsement from Energy Northwest, an organization with a 30-year history of nuclear plant operation. Energy Northwest and a group comprised of public and investor-owned utilities conducted a rigorous assessment of all available small modular reactor (SMR) technologies as part of their long-term energy planning process, according to Mark Reddeman, CEO of Energy Northwest. “This assessment spanned a two-year period and concluded, if we were selecting a reactor technology today, we would select the NuScale SMR,” said Reddeman.
NuScale Power has the financial backing and technical assistance of Fluor Corporation, a multibillion-dollar global engineering firm with a history of more than 60 years in the nuclear new build market. Fluor has designed, built or provided construction support for 20 nuclear units in the U.S., and provides a full range of procurement and other services to nuclear plant operators worldwide.
About NuScale Power, LLC
NuScale Power is designing a nuclear steam supply system and nuclear power plant that offers the benefits of nuclear power but takes away the issues presented by installing large capacity. The NuScale design is for a modular, scalable Light Water Reactor (LWR) nuclear power plant system. A nuclear power plant using NuScale’s technology is comprised of individual NSSS modules. Each produces 45 megawatts with its own combined containment vessel and reactor system, and its own designated turbine-generator set. A power plant can include as many as 12 NuScale integral PWR modules to produce as much as 540 megawatts. NuScale nuclear power plants are scalable – additional modules are added as customer demand for electricity increases. These multi-module plants are highly reliable – one unit can be taken out of service for refueling or maintenance, or a new unit added, without affecting the operation of the others. For more information visit www.nuscalepower.com