The US Department of Energy has selected two teams, one led by Westinghouse and the other by General Atomics, to share $40 million in funding for the conceptual design of the Next Generation Nuclear Plant (NGNP).
The Westinghouse team comprises South Africa’s Pebble Bed Modular Reactor Limited, Shaw Environmental & Infrastructure Inc., Toshiba, Doosan, Technology Insights, and M-Tech Industrial (PTY)
The General Atomics-led consortium includes General Dynamics Electric Boat Division, URS Washington Division, Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, and Fuji Electric Systems.
The funding is awarded for Phase 1 of the project, which comprises research and development, conceptual design and development of licensing requirements for NGNP. DOE says the intention is to complete the conceptual designs by end of August 2010.
Following Phase 1, the US Administration will decide whether to proceed with Phase 2 of the project. That would entail detailed design, license review and construction of a demonstration plant to evaluate the use of high-temperature reactors for electricity and process heat production.
US Secretary of Energy, Stephen Chu commented: “This investment reflects President Obama's commitment to building the next generation of nuclear reactors that will create thousands of jobs and supply the clean energy to power our economy.”
“It's time for America to recapture the lead in the nuclear energy industry and lay the foundation for a stronger, cleaner, and more competitive economic future,” he said.