First Advanced Nuclear Design Approved by the NRC

NuScale Power achieved a major milestone with far-reaching implications, by being the first private company to receive approval from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for an advanced reactor design. As NuScale’s Chairman and CEO, John Hopkins so aptly said: “This is a significant milestone not only for NuScale, but also for the entire U.S. nuclear sector and the other advanced nuclear technologies that will follow. This clearly establishes the leadership of NuScale and the U.S. in the race to bring SMRs to market. The approval of NuScale’s design is an incredible accomplishment and we would like to extend our deepest thanks to the NRC for their comprehensive review, to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for its continued commitment to our successful private-public partnership to bring the country’s first SMR to market, and to the many other individuals who have dedicated countless hours to make this extraordinary moment a reality.”

As exciting as this development is, NuScale’s design is just the first of many new advanced reactor designs that will be applying for NRC approval—and it is one of the least innovative.  NuScale Power has developed a new form factor—a small modular design—for the older light water reactor (LWR) technology that has been the basis of traditional nuclear power plants.  This “half step”  redesign, deploying a modular reactor, enables NuScale to factory fabricate their NuScale Power Modules,™ each capable of generating 60 MW of electricity and generating more economy of scale in the process. NuScale’s scalable design—where plants can deploy up to 12 individual power modules—offers the benefits of carbon-free energy and reduces the early financial commitments associated with gigawatt-sized nuclear facilities, which has been seen as a major stumbling block for regions seeking clean energy but where a Gigaton-sized nuclear power plant was too big.

Read more about this move at Business Wire: “NuScale Power Makes History as the First Ever Small Modular Reactor to Receive U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Design Approval.”