The UK has today reaffirmed its position as a key player in a new generation of Small Modular Reactors (SMRs). Dorset-based Ultra Electronics, Nuclear Control Systems successfully conducted the acceptance testing of the innovative NuScale Power Module™ protection system it is developing for leading U.S. SMR developer NuScale Power. The UK-developed system will be critical to the operation of NuScale’s ground-breaking technology, which will generate clean, reliable, affordable power in both the U.S. and the UK.
Ultra Electronics and Nuscale Team Photo: Courtesy of Nuscale
John Hopkins, NuScale’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer said: “This latest milestone demonstrates how NuScale’s partnership with world-renowned British companies like Ultra, is fundamental to our programme on both sides of the Atlantic. Ultra Electronics’ knowledge and experience in the area of I&C systems continues to be a powerful asset to NuScale’s SMR design and deployment prospects.”
Rakesh Sharma, Chief Executive of Ultra Electronics stated, “Our success in developing this critical safety component is testament to the expertise of both companies, which complement each other very well. We look forward to continuing our work with NuScale and playing a fundamental role in bringing its innovative, cost-effective SMR technology to market.”
Factory Acceptance Tests were conducted at Ultra’s facility in Wimborne, Dorset in early February. The tests – witnessed by representatives from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) – successfully demonstrated the systems’ capabilities in handling safety-critical scenarios associated with the operation of NuScale’s technology. This innovative safety system has been designed to reduce unnecessary complexity, reduce capital and operational cost, improve safety and reduce risk – all of which aligns with NuScale’s overall philosophy.
The results of the tests will now feed into the NRC’s upcoming review of NuScale’s design certification application (DCA). In December 2016, the company formally asked the U.S. regulator to review and approve its commercial power plant design – the first SMR technology developer ever to do so. Development of an important safety component of NuScale’s SMR design represents a significant step in the realisation of the company’s innovative technology, which will be ready for manufacture and deployment in the U.S. and the UK by the mid-2020s.
NuScale and Ultra have been working together for a number of years, with Ultra becoming an investor and strategic partner in 2015. This has involved bringing Ultra’s expertise in nuclear safety system and sensor design, manufacture and support to the NuScale design team. Ultra is one of a number of UK-based nuclear industry players collaborating with NuScale around deployment in both the U.S. and the UK. Others includes Yorkshire-based Sheffield Forgemasters International Ltd, with whom NuScale is working with to develop a demonstration forging of its reactor vessel head, as part of a programme supported by Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency.
About NuScale Power
NuScale Power, LLC is developing a new kind of nuclear plant; a safer, smaller, scalable version of pressurized water reactor technology - a technology initially developed and tested at Oregon State University. Fluor Corporation (NYSE: FLR), a global engineering, procurement, and construction company with a 60-year history in commercial nuclear power, is the majority investor in NuScale. NuScale's design offers the benefits of carbon-free nuclear power and reduces the financial commitments associated with giga-watt size nuclear facilities. NuScale's technology is also ideally suited to supply energy for district heating, desalination, and process heat applications. At the heart of our technology is the fully factory fabricated NuScale Power Module™, an integral reactor vessel surrounded by a high pressure steel containment, which when coupled to its factory fabricated power generation equipment can produce 50 megawatts of electricity. A NuScale power plant can house up to 12 of these modules for a total facility output of 600 megawatts (gross). The scalability afforded by the modular design allows customers to incrementally increase facility output to match demand. The NuScale Power Module™ is premised on well-established nuclear technology principles with a focus on integration of components, simplification or elimination of systems, and use of passive safety features resulting in highly reliable operation underpinned by an extremely strong safety case and unparalleled asset protection, making it suitable to be sited at locations closer to where electricity or process heat are needed. NuScale is headquartered in Portland, Oregon and has offices in Corvallis, OR; Rockville, MD; Charlotte, NC; Richland, WA; and London, UK. For more information visit: www.nuscalepower.com or follow us on Twitter: @NuScale_Power and @NuScaleUK.
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