The U.S. Energy Department, Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) and Savannah River Site have signed three Memorandums of Agreements (MOUs) with NuScale Power, Holtec International and Hyperion Power Generation to establish effective deployment strategies for small modular nuclear reactor (SMR) technologies at SRS in South Carolina.
The agreements will allow these private companies to gain information on SMR reactor deployment at SRS and offer a framework to develop land use and site services contracts to promote these initiatives. The MOUs help to leverage Savannah River’s nuclear expertise, energy facilities and land assets that support private sectors to develop, test and license prototype SMR technologies.
The Energy Department has implemented several efforts to help the development of the nuclear industry in America. The advancement of SMR technologies is a part of these efforts. The reactors offer various benefits, including lower capital costs, compact design and passive safety systems. The agreements will help to overcome the design and testing obstacles for research and development of advanced nuclear reactor technologies while offering sufficient resources for the nuclear power companies to develop efficient deployment plans.
The MOUs is a key part of America’s energy strategies, which are as follows: the department has made $170 million investment in research grants at over 70 universities to support R&D of technologies; it has supported the Vogtle nuclear power project and the development of new nuclear reactors by offering over $200 million; in 2010, the Energy Department has entered into a conditional contract for $8 billion loan to support the Vogtle nuclear reactor project; and in 2012, the department has offered $10 million research funds to overcome common challenges found in the nuclear industry and to enhance performance, safety and cost competitiveness of the reactors.