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Argonne Lab working with 3 nuclear companies on next-generation reactor projects

The US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory will work with three of the world’s leading nuclear products and services companies on advanced nuclear reactor design projects. The three projects partner Argonne with AREVA Federal Services (Aiken, S.C.); GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (Wilmington, N.C.); and Westinghouse Electric Company (Monroeville, Pa.) to address significant technical challenges to the design, construction and operation of next-generation reactors.

Overall, DOE selected 5 projects $13 million in cost-share agreements to help address significant technical challenges to the design, construction and operation of next-generation nuclear reactors, based on needs identified by industry designers and technical experts. DOE created the program in 2013.

Argonne-involved projects are:

  • AREVA is partnering with TerraPower Company (working to commercialize Traveling Wave Reactors, TWR), Argonne and Texas A&M University to conduct thermal hydraulic modeling and simulations and an experimental investigation for liquid metal-cooled fast reactor fuel assemblies.

  • GE Hitachi (GEH) is partnering with Argonne to develop an updated safety assessment of the company’s PRISM sodium-cooled fast reactor.

  • Westinghouse is partnering with Argonne and the University of Pittsburgh to develop thermo-acoustic sensors for sodium-cooled fast reactors.

Funding for the awards is provided by the DOE Office of Nuclear Energy.




Is this another automated play back?


I would like to have a smaller one in my next car.


PRISM sodium-cooled fast reactor

This is the one that will use up the waste plutonium and uranium while drastically reducing greenhouse gas emissions.


So far, thorium based (molten salt reactors) are found to be the best for the job... but there is no "dual" use (weaponized plutonium) as it is in case with uranium. Although this type of reactor is known for generations and it is safe and 4 times smaller, the development was stalled due to absence of military interests. It is a shame again: the nice thing was invented in USA to be under development in India.

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