Nuclear Regulatory Commission certifies first small modular reactor

Ja US Nuclear Regulatory Commission a approved the first-ever small modular reactor, from NuScale, a step towards the goal of a next-generation form of clean energy.

“The affirmation of NuScale’s design and strong safety record could not have come at a more crucial time – as people around the world struggle with worsening crises of oil price volatility. energy and extreme weather events related to climate change,” said NuScale President and CEO. John Hopkins said in a statement shared on Twitter.

“We are thrilled with this continued recognition of the safety design inherent in our technology and our potential as a timely, carbon-free energy solution to meet the needs of our global community,” added Hopkins.

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The commission said Friday it had asked its staff to approve NuScale’s Generation IV nuclear reactor design for certification. Certification will be effective 30 days after NRC staff publish the rule in the Federal Register.

Reactor approval is a major milestone for NuScale, which in December 2016 applied for certification of its small modular reactor design for use in the United States.

It is also a major milestone for the NRC, which has only authorized six reactor design certificates since its inception in 1974. Previously, the NRC authorized designs for Advanced Boiling Water Reactor, System 80+, AP600, AP1000, Economy Simplified Boiling Water Reactor and APR1400.

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NuScale is currently working with the Carbon Free Power Project, a wholly owned subsidiary of Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems, to deploy the first plant of its kind at the Department of Energy’s National Laboratory in Idaho Falls. It hopes to start operations as soon as 2029.

Aurora J. William