UK based nuclear engineering, project management and services contractor, Nuvia, has been appointed as the Technical Advisor for phase one of the UK government’s two-phase Advanced Modular Reactor (AMR) Feasibility and Development (F&D) programme, the UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) announced on 25 October.
Phase 1 makes available around £4m ($5.1m) in funding for a series of feasibility studies for AMR designs. In Phase 2, subject to approval, up to £40m may be available for successful designs to undertake applied research and development. Nuvia, acting on behalf of BEIS, will provide an assessment of the feasibility studies submitted by each of the AMR F&D research initiative contractors. The BEIS investment is to establish an AMR F&D project and to explore potential UK involvement in AMR deployment in the UK and abroad. For this project AMRs are defined as a broad group of advanced nuclear reactors. AMRs aim to maximise the amount of offsite factory fabrication and can target:
- generating low cost electricity;
- increased flexibility in delivering electricity to the grid;
- increased functionality, such as the provision of heat output for domestic or industrial purposes, or facilitating the production of hydrogen; and
- alternative applications that may generate additional revenue or economic growth.
At the end of the project Nuvia will provide BEIS with reports on elements of the feasibility studies, including providing an assessment on the validity, credibility and completeness. This report will then be used in an overarching review to down select contractors for Phase 2 of the programme.
The eight companies selected for phase 1 are: Advanced Reactor Concepts, with its ARC-100 sodium-cooled reactor; DBD representing the HTR-PM reactor developed by China's Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology (INET); LeadCold, which has developed the SEALER lead-cooled reactor using uranium nitride fuel; Moltex Energy with its innovative Stable Salt Reactor; Tokamak Energy, pushing small modular fusion reactors; U-Battery, with a small modular high temperature gas-cooled reactor using TRISO fuel; US-based Ultra Safe Nuclear, with a HTGR-based Micro-Modular Reactor; and reactor vendor Westinghouse, who is working with Ansaldo Nucleare and ENEA on a Lead-cooled Fast Reactor.