Tuesday, September 01, 2009

The Race for Mini-Reactors

Sandia National Laboratories joined the race to license and build mini nuclear reactors -- small, modular, safe, and cheap in comparison to standard commercial reactors.
Sandia National Laboratories said it has designed a small nuclear reactor and is looking for partners to commercialize it and even sell it overseas. The reactor could provide 100 to 300 megawatts worth of heat. More importantly, the factory-built reactor could be completed in two years, far less than the seven years or more that large (3,000 megawatts), conventional reactors take.

Roughly 85 percent of the design is complete. The cost of the reactor could drop to $250 million once in production. _GreentechMedia
Already in the race are:

Hyperion Power Generation

Babcock and Wilcox

NuScale Power


TerraPower is unique in that it aims to produce fully scalable reactors that run on either natural or depleted uranium. That approach would eliminate the risk of weapons proliferation from its fuel, and would cut fuel costs significantly.



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