Canada’s X-energy and Kinectrics have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to support the establishment of Helius, a clean energy innovation centre, in Canada.

The first-of-a-kind campus will provide testing facilities for systems and components of the Xe-100 small modular reactor (SMR) and other High-Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) technology that will prove instrumental in the global fight against climate change, X-energy said.

Helius is envisioned as a collaborative research hub bringing together clean energy technology developers, academia, industry and other key stakeholders. It will support thermal hydraulic testing; materials testing and qualification; component functional or performance testing; and other related activities. The world-class facility will also house equipment enabling research and development and will come with extensive capabilities to demonstrate proof of concept for SMR viability in non-electrical market applications.

“Helius will provide critical infrastructure for our plans to net-zero,” said Katherine Moshonas Cole, President of X-energy Canada. “As well as testing our Xe-100’s systems and components in helium and high-temperature environments, the facility will also enable us to demonstrate the use of our reactor’s high temperature steam for hydrogen production and direct industrial uses. These capabilities are integral to Canada’s transition to a clean energy future.”

Based in Toronto, Canada, Kinectrics is the category leader in providing life cycle management services for the electricity industry. 

Kinectrics is the supplier of choice for execution of X-energy’s test programme. X-energy and Kinectrics recently signed a collaboration agreement to advance the design and deployment of the Xe-100 SMR in Canada, the USA and worldwide. Kinectrics has been instrumental to X-energy’s progress in the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s (CNSC) Pre-Licensing Vendor Design Review (VDR). The MOU builds on this partnership, advancing efforts to establish the infrastructure required to develop, test and commercialise clean energy technologies, such as the Xe-100 HTGR. 

The Xe-100 is designed to operate as a standard 320MWe four-pack power plant or be scaled in units of 80MWe, as needed. The SMR is engineered to deliver reliable and load-following grid-scale power to electricity systems, pairing seamlessly with renewables. At 200 MWt of 565°C steam, the Xe-100 is also ideal for heavy industry, mining, petrochemical and other power applications.

Photo: X-energy and Kinetrics have agreed to support the establishment of Helius