Cost Competitive

A Cost Competitive Nuclear Power Solution

With the first ever small modular reactor (SMR) to receive U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) design approval, NuScale is bringing the first SMR power plant online in the U.S. this decade. Our SMR technology, the NuScale Power Module™ (module), can generate 25 percent more power at 77 megawatts of electricity (MWe), resulting in a total output of 924 MWe (gross) for our flagship 12-module NuScale power plant. We also offer smaller power plant solutions in 4-module (308 MWe) and 6-module (462 MWe) sizes that are underpinned by the rigorous safety case of our NRC-approved SMR design. With an array of flexible and economic power options, NuScale is poised to meet the diverse energy needs of its global customers.

Short Construction Schedule

NuScale’s SMR technology is smaller and simpler, resulting in lower costs and a shorter nuclear construction period of less than 36-months from the first safety concrete. This brings our SMR technology online sooner, with the very first module generating power and revenue while additional modules are being planned for or installed. Since modules can be added incrementally as load demands increase, NuScale offers a unique level of flexibility and reduced financial risk for customers.

Lower Capital, Operating, and Maintenance Costs

NuScale Power Modules are fully factory-manufactured with no in-field construction, erection, or fabrication and they are transported to the power plant site—making our power plants less expensive to build, operate, and maintain. Compared to large nuclear plants, our simplified SMR design results in greater use of “commercial off-the-shelf” items that need not be supplied under stringent and costly nuclear standards.

NuScale has undertaken detailed studies of capital, operating, and decommissioning costs for our 12-module, 924 MWe plant design. Results demonstrated that the total capitalized cost of the NuScale plant is approximately 38% of a reference 4-loop pressurized water reactor (PWR) of 1,147 MWe net output, representing a reduction of nearly $4 billion. Accounting for differences in power output, the capitalized construction cost per kW for the NuScale plant is 62% of the 4-loop PWR ($3,466/kW versus $5,587/kW). Operating and maintenance costs for a NuScale plant will be lower than those of the top 25% U.S. large nuclear power plants.

Reliability and Resiliency

Our country faces the inevitable retirement of fossil fuel plants due to the challenges of aging infrastructure and the urgent need to address climate change. NuScale’s scalable SMR can provide clean energy that is safe and economic, with more reliability and long-term price predictability than options such as natural gas which still produces CO2 emissions.

The NuScale power plant’s level of resiliency is unmatched by any operating nuclear plant in the world, with the ability to provide reliable long-term power and grid recovery support. Our power plants can continue to provide electricity on a micro-grid arrangement even after the main transmission system grid is inoperable, including during extreme weather and seismic events. Our plants offer mission critical facilities a level of certainty for achieving close to the “Five 9s” (99.999 percent) for exceptionally reliable power. Connection to a micro-grid, island mode capability, and the ability for 100% turbine bypass allows a 12-module 924 MWe (gross) NuScale plant to assure 154 MWe net power at 99.95% reliability over a 60-year lifetime. With only one module, our power plant can provide 77 MWe (enough carbon-free electricity to power 60,000 homes in the U.S.) at 99.98% reliability, which equates to only four days in 60 years where there would be zero output from a NuScale facility.

Community Benefits

Building and operating a nuclear power plant brings direct economic benefits to the community it serves. After construction, each plant will support many full-time high-quality, high-paying jobs. On average per year, a nuclear power plant in the U.S. generates $470M in local community sales of goods and services and pays around $16M in state and local taxes. This generates continued economic prosperity for the regional economy while delivering the environmental benefits of clean, emissions-free power.

Timeline to Commercialization

Computer rendition of a NuScale power plant

NuScale’s SMR is a mature technology and we will be ready to provide modules to clients by 2027. We are not in the conceptual stage of development, but rather finalizing the design to prepare for the manufacture and construction of our first power plant in the United States. By the end of this decade, a NuScale power plant will become part of the Carbon Free Power Project (CFPP), an initiative spearheaded by the public power consortium Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS). The first module will be operational by mid-2029 with remaining modules coming online for full plant operation by 2030.

With these and other cost competitive features, NuScale is revolutionizing the nuclear industry and leading the way into the new frontier of clean energy. Our mission is to provide scalable advanced nuclear technology to produce electricity, heat, and water that will improve the quality of life for people around the world.

Related Publications

Economic Impact Report: Construction and Operation of a Small Modular Reactor Electric Power Generation Facility at the Idaho National Laboratory Site, Butte County, Idaho - Dr. Geoffrey Black, Steven Peterson, Idaho Policy Institute, Boise State University, McClure Center for Public Policy Research, University of Idaho

Economic Viability of Light Water Small Modular Nuclear Reactors: General Methodology and Vendor Data - Geoffrey A. Black, Fatih Aydogan, Cassandra L. Koerner, Department of Economics, Boise State University, Jacksonville University, Idaho Public Utilities Commission, Boise, ID and Jacksonville, FL