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TerraPower Chooses Bechtel for Natrium Reactor

Power News - Published on Fri, 16 Oct 2020

Image Source: TerraPower Bechtel Natrium Reactor
TerraPower has unveiled Bechtel as its plant design, licensing, procurement, and construction partner in a federal grant application to build a demonstration plant for the Natrium reactor and energy system architecture. Bechtel, the industry leader in nuclear plant engineering and construction since the 1950s, joins a team that also includes GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, PacifiCorp, Energy Northwest, and Duke Energy.

The Natrium system features an advanced, cost-competitive sodium fast reactor along with an innovative molten salt energy storage system based on those used in solar thermal generation. The result is a design that is affordable and capable of adapting to changes in daily electricity demands driven by solar and wind energy fluctuations. The Natrium technology also separates nuclear and non-nuclear facilities and systems within the plant footprint, simplifying the licensing process and lowering construction costs.

Breakthroughs in sodium fast reactor technology have allowed the Natrium reactor to safely operate at much higher temperatures and lower pressures than conventional nuclear reactors. The heat is used to generate steam for a turbine, like most power plants, but it also can be used for industrial processes or stored in molten salt. The system’s gigawatt-hour-scale energy storage can also be optimized to meet the needs of specific markets.

This partnership is part of the TerraPower-led proposal for the US Department of Energy’s Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program, which is intended to support the deployment of two first-of-a-kind advanced reactor designs in the next five to seven years.

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Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Fri, 16 Oct 2020
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