Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with US-based Clean Core Thorium Energy to further the development and deployment of Clean Core’s Advanced Nuclear Energy for Enriched Life (ANEEL) fuel. Under this framework, CNL will support Clean Core’s activities, including R&D and licensing.

ANEEL fuel technology leverages thorium and high assay low enriched Uranium (HALEU) with the aim of improving the economics and safety of Candu and pressurised heavy water reactors (PHWRs), while also increasing proliferation resistance and reducing waste. Clean Core expects that ANEEL Fuel to be commercially ready in 2025. “Our strategic partnership with Canadian Nuclear Laboratories will help accelerate the commercialisation of our ANEEL Fuel, with the potential to make reactors cleaner, more cost effective, and further improve safety,” said Clean Core CEO Mehul Shah.

“This affiliation with CNL on realising ANEEL Fuel, together with research we are conducting in collaboration with our partners in the United States, creates a powerful cooperative effort to propel ANEEL fuel toward commercial readiness,” he added. In June 2022, Clean Core announced a strategic partnership agreement with the US Department of Energy (DOE) for the testing of its ANEEL fuel in Idaho National Laboratory’s (INL’s) Advanced Test Reactor. INL is currently conducting high-burnup irradiation testing and qualification of the fuel. Clean Core says it next aims to carry out a demonstration irradiation of ANEEL fuel in a commercial Candu/PHWR assuming it obtains regulatory approval.

Image courtesy of Clean Core Thorium Energy