NuScale commissions second SMR simulator

10 May 2017

The USA's NuScale Power has commissioned a second small modular reactor (SMR) control room simulator to model the operation of its nuclear power plant design. The Portland, Oregon-headquartered company said yesterday the new simulator will be used to develop plant operating procedures and training material as well as a training platform for future nuclear plant operators at a NuScale power plant.

NuScale second simulator - 460 (NuScale)
NuScale's second SMR simulator (Image: NuScale)

In December, NuScale submitted the first-ever SMR design certification application to the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, for the design of its SMR and for a power plant containing 12 NuScale modules capable of a total facility output of 600 MWe (gross). On 15 March, the NRC accepted NuScale's application. The first commercial NuScale power plant is planned for construction on the site of the Idaho National Laboratory for Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems and operated by Energy Northwest.

The new simulator, located at NuScale's Richland, Washington office, serves as a virtual nuclear power plant control room with work stations to simulate the operation of a NuScale SMR module, turbine generator and support systems used to generate electricity.

Carl Markert, NuScale Power's vice president of Operations and Plant Services, said the system provides comprehensive monitoring and control of all plant systems for a 12-unit NuScale power plant in a single main control room.

NuScale joined with Energy Northwest and UAMPS in 2013 to promote a commercial SMR project in the western USA. Energy Northwest holds first right of offer to operate the project.

Mark Reddemann, CEO of Energy Northwest, said the new simulator will provide "an invaluable training environment for plant personnel".

In the same NuScale statement, Senator Sharon Brown said having the simulator in Washington will help her "make the case" for SMR technology with the public, members of the media and other lawmakers. Brown is the sponsor of several measures aimed at making Washington more attractive to SMR manufacturers, including Senate Bill 5475, which would provide a business-and-occupation tax incentive for the production of SMRs.

NuScale announced in August 2012 the commissioning of its first control room simulator, at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Oregon. That simulator scaled up a test facility that has been in operation at the university since 2003.

The fully factory fabricated NuScale Power Module is an integral reactor vessel surrounded by a high-pressure steel containment, which when coupled to its factory fabricated power generation equipment can produce 50 Mwe of electricity.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News