US-based Terrestrial Energy said on 8 April that it had contracted with ENGIE Laborelec in Belgium for technical services. This contract is part of Terrestrial Energy’s nuclear fuel salt qualification programme for the Generation IV Integral Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR®). ENGIE Laborelec will perform confirmatory electrochemical and thermophysical measurements as well as confirmatory corrosion testing. The tests will be performed under conditions compliant with quality assurance protocols of nuclear codes and standards, as is required to advance a nuclear power plant design through the regulatory process. To perform this wide range of testing, ENGIE Laborelec will work in close collaboration with its partners, John Cockerill, CRM Group and IJCLab-CNRS.
ENGIE Laborelec, part of ENGIE’s Tractebel Business Unit, has provided technical consultancy services to the electrical power sector for over 55 years. Supported by 300 highly specialised engineers and technicians, ENGIE Laborelec provides operational assistance and technical consulting for nuclear operators. This initiative is part of a combined Tractebel and ENGIE Laborelec programme to become leaders in Small Modular Reactor development.
ENGIE Laborelec CEO Michael Marique said: “Terrestrial Energy is engaged in a program of nuclear fuel qualification for its IMSR®, a small modular reactor power plant that uses molten salt technology. With our expert knowledge, operational experience, and state-of-the-art measurement and analysis capabilities, we can greatly assist.”
Simon Irish, CEO of Terrestrial Energy said he recognised ENGIE Laborelec’s considerable capabilities in this area. “Our relationship with ENGIE Laborelec reflects an important feature of our nuclear fuel supply chain strategy. That is to leverage existing world-class expertise to support our early deployment schedule. Nuclear fuel qualification is a key element to the commercial deployment of any nuclear power plant technology.” Terrestrial Energy said it is engaged with regulators and industrial partners to complete IMSR® engineering and to commission first IMSR® power plants in the late 2020s.