Small modular reactors in New Brunswick
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Advanced Small Modular Reactors
There is growing interest in advanced Small Modular Reactors (SMR) – the next generation of nuclear technology – because of their potential to generate low-carbon electricity safely, reliably, and inexpensively. They offer great flexibility for a number of uses within New Brunswick’s power grid.
WHAT ARE ADVANCED SMALL MODULAR REACTORS?
SmallIn both size and power output compared to conventional power reactors. They produce one to 300 megawatts (MW) of electricity, as opposed to 600-1500 MW produced by traditional reactors.
ModularMeans that they are manufactured in factories and transported to site after for lower capital costs as well as ease of installation, operation and removal.
ReactorsAdvanced SMR use nuclear power, which is a non-emitting and efficient way to generate electricity. Advanced SMR are also designed for simplified and inherent safety and proliferation resistance.
WHAT IS HAPPENING IN NEW BRUNSWICK?
NB Power is working with two private-sector partners, ARC Clean Technology and Moltex Energy, to advance Generation IV Plus Grid sized SMR technology for use in New Brunswick.
The New Brunswick Energy Solutions Corporation, a provincial Crown corporation, committed $10 million in 2018 towards the establishment of an advanced SMR Research Cluster in New Brunswick. Moltex and ARC also each invested $5 million to progress research and development of their advanced technologies.
The Government of New Brunswick, through the Energy Solutions Corporation, is also playing a role in helping to map a Canadian strategy for the development of SMR technology. In December 2019, New Brunswick, Ontario and Saskatchewan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to work cooperatively for the development and deployment of SMR in Canada. In April 2021, Alberta also signed the MOU.
Why is this important to New Brunswick and Canada?
New Brunswick will be the centre of excellence for the development of the advanced SMR technology in the 2020-2035 time period. The direct and indirect economic benefits are projected to create:
Approximately 730 jobsper year over 15 years
$1 billionin Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
$120 millionin provincial government revenue
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