Rolls-Royce SMR (Photo credit Rolls-Royce)The UK Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) on 1 April announced, along with the Environment Agency and Natural Resources Wales, the start of Step 1 of the Generic Design Assessment (GDA) for Rolls-Royce SMR Limited’s 470MW small modular reactor (SMR) design.

ONR said it had received a request from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) to begin a GDA on the design proposed by Rolls-Royce, following the government’s readiness review of the Rolls-Royce application. ONR has now signed a charging agreement with Rolls-Royce SMR Limited and has mobilised sufficient management, assessment and business support resource to conduct the GDA.

The GDA process focuses on the design of a generic nuclear power station and is not site-specific. The process is systematic and contains a number of steps, with the assessment getting increasingly detailed as the process develops.

“We will only issue a Design Acceptance Confirmation (DAC) at the end of the GDA if the design meets the high safety, security and waste management standards expected by our regulatory framework,” ONR said.

“The DAC does not guarantee that ONR will grant permission for the construction of a power station based on the Rolls-Royce SMR design at a particular site in Great Britain.”

The 470MW Rolls-Royce SMR has started the UK Generic Design Assessment (Credit: Rolls-Royce)