Dutch company Thorizon has raised €12.5 million for the development of its ‘thorium molten salt reactor’ that will use long-lived waste in combination with thorium as fuel. Thorizon is a spin-off from the Nuclear Research and consultancy Group (NRG), which operates the High Flux Reactor in Petten. Thorizon has been working on this new type of reactor for several years.

With the €12.5 million investment, essential tests and research can be performed, to complete the design of a first prototype, thorizon said. The aim is to realise a first reactor system before 2035. Founder Lucas Pool noted: “What started as a good idea several years ago has developed into a very promising reactor design, we are very happy with the confidence of our investors and partners. “

Thorizon’s first system uses a mixture of existing long-lived waste and the abundant metal thorium, whereby a large amount of the long-lived waste can be turned into short-lived waste and CO2-free energy.

For the development of this technology, Thorizon will collaborate closely with several parties, such as France’s Orano and NRG. Together with EPZ, operator of the Borssele NPP, Thorizon is investigating the possibility of constructing a first system on their site. A broader consortium of research institutions including TU Delft and DIFFER, component suppliers, and industrial service providers will support this development.

The investors include both private and public sector parties. The private investors are venture capital fund Positron Ventures(lead investor), impact investor Invest-NL, one private investor, and the company Huisman, which not only invests but will also become an industrial supplier. The public sector investors are the two provincial funds PDENH (lead investor) and Impuls Zeeland. 

Image: Thorizon's molten salt reactor design (courtesy of Thorizon)