January 18, 2017
NuScale Power, a subsidiary of Fluor Corp., submitted a design certification application for a small modular reactor (SMR) to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Pending approval and evaluations, NuScale hopes to have its first SMR up and running by the middle of 2026 on a site at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory, near Idaho Falls.
The company, which is headquartered in Portland, OR and has operations in Corvallis, OR, indicated the SMR is different from traditional nuclear power plants, in that the modules generate approximately 50 megawatts, and use natural convection currents to circulate cooling water in the reactor vessels, as opposed to the standard electrical pumps. As such, the reactors automatically turn themselves off in a shutdown, and allow the core to cool naturally. They can also be shipped by truck, barge or train.
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