DOE Awards Funding to NuScale Power's SMR Technology

U.S. DOE Awards Funding for NuScale Power’s SMR Technology Award Includes Up to Five Years and $226 Million in Funding

On December 12th the U.S. Department of Energy announced that it selected NuScale Power as the winner of the second round of the cost-sharing program to develop nuclear small modular reactor (SMR) technology. As part of the award, NuScale will receive funding that will support the accelerated development of its NuScale Power Module™ SMR technology.

NuScale and DOE will now negotiate a cooperative agreement that formalizes the public-private relationship and establishes milestones for the five-year funding program.

An independent team of industry experts convened by DOE conducted a rigorous evaluation of multiple SMR technologies before selecting NuScale Power for this award. NuScale will be required to match the Federal funds, which it will use to design, engineer, test, and pursue U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission design certification of its technology.

The NuScale design was initially developed in 2000, and has been demonstrated in testing programs since 2003 in a fully-instrumented one-third scale electrically-heated test facility in Corvallis, OR. In addition, NuScale commissioned a full-scale multi-module control-room simulator in May 2012. Both facilities were U.S. SMR industry firsts.

In June 0f 2012, at the Western Governors Association meeting in Park City, Utah NuScale Power announced the launch of the Western Initiative for Nuclear Project (WIN).

As part of Project WIN, NuScale has signed teaming agreements with Energy Northwest in Washington State and the Utah Association of Municipal Power Systems.

The first NuScale project will most likely be developed and owned by a consortium of regional utilities like Project WIN. According to a DOE press release the project will support suppliers and operations in Idaho, California, Washington, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, Kansas, Texas and Maryland.

Several western governors have voice support for the project including Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter: “The technology of small modular reactors holds real promise for cleanly and safely addressing long-term energy needs in the west. I’m pleased that western governors are engaging with industry to realize that promise.”

NuScale and its partners are exploring a 6 to 12 module (270MW-540ME) plant to be located at a site like the Idaho National Laboratory. It’s hoped that the plant will become operational in the 2023-2024 timeframe.

Posted on December 26, 2013 .