August 1, 2012
- NuScale Power LLC has commissioned the world’s first small
modular reactor (SMR) control room simulator to model the operation of its inherently
safe nuclear power plant design.
The simulator serves as a virtual nuclear power plant control room that allows NuScale
to evaluate different approaches to the design and operation of a power plant using
its technology. The control room simulator has 12 independent work stations each
dedicated to simulating the operation of a NuScale SMR module and a turbine generator
used to generate electricity.
NuScale is pursuing U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission approval for the design of
its SMR and for a power plant containing 12 NuScale modules capable of producing
540,000 kilowatts of electricity, enough to power a city of one-half million people.
Commissioning of the full-scale simulator marked the latest first for the NuScale
team, which established the concept for its SMR more than a decade ago. A one-third
scale, electrically-heated test facility that replicates the thermo-hydraulic performance
at Oregon State University also was the first of its kind for an SMR when it began
operation in 2003. The test facility has allowed NuScale to both verify and validate
the inherent safety in its design. The design requires no forced mechanical systems
to operate or to shut down safely.
“NuScale’s first-mover status has allowed the company to set the standard for small
modular reactors,” said Paul Lorenzini, chief executive officer. “NuScale established
the first operational test facility, the first regulatory interactions, the first
customer advisory board, and now the first full-scale control room simulator.”
More than 200 people are at work on the engineering and design for NuScale’s technology.
The U.S. Department of Energy is evaluating a proposal from NuScale to match as
much as $226 million of the company’s costs associated with the licensing and engineering
associated with securing NRC approval for the technology and for the first power
plant. DOE originally funded the concept that led to the NuScale design.
“With an inherently safe design and an option that dramatically lowers the business
risk associated with building and operating a nuclear power plant, NuScale has changed
the game in commercial nuclear power,” Lorenzini said. “We believe NuScale’s technology
can restore global U.S. leadership in nuclear power and create an industry that
will result in thousands of high quality jobs in Oregon and across the country.”
About NuScale Power, LLC
NuScale Power, LLC is developing an inherently safe, modular, scalable commercial
nuclear power technology. NuScale’s design offers the benefits of carbon-free nuclear
power but takes away the issues presented by the cost of installing large capacity.
A nuclear power plant using NuScale’s technology is comprised of individual nuclear
power modules; each produces 45 megawatts of electricity 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 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. The reactors are
cooled by natural convection of water, requiring no pumps in event of a shutdown.
For more information visit: www.nuscalepower.com