Modular nuclear plan put forward for Wylfa

Article by Adam Duckett

An artist’s rendering of NuScale Power’s small modular nuclear reactor plant

SMALL modular nuclear reactors (SMR) could be twinned with wind power, in a project that has been proposed for Wylfa, Anglesey in the UK.

Shearwater Energy has submitted a proposal to the UK Governments and signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with SMR pioneer NuScale Energy to further develop its plans.

The project would provide 3 GW of power using modular nuclear reactors and offshore wind. Any surplus power would be used to produce up to 3m kg/y hydrogen for use in greener transport, the company said.

“Combining low-carbon generating technologies enables us to achieve similar performance characteristics to large thermal plants without the high cost, long construction time and environmental legacy”, explained Simon Forster, CEO of Shearwater Energy.

The project, consisting of 12 modular reactors capable of generating 924 MWe, would cost 40% less to build than a conventional plant, Forster told the BBC.

Shearwater Energy has proposed building the plant at Wylfa, which was earmarked under a separate proposal for a new conventional nuclear plant until Hitachi abandoned plans in September.

Shearwater Energy said power generation at Wylfa could begin as early as 2027.

In August, NuScale’s reactor became the first of a new generation of proposed modular technologies to receive full approval for its design by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Earlier this month it signed an agreement with Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems to further develop plans to deploy its modules at the Idaho National Laboratory. This could lead to an order for reactors as early as next year with construction beginning from 2025, NuScale said.

Article by Adam Duckett

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