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DOE awards $10.6M to nuclear energy technology projects

The US Department of Energy (DOE) is awarding $10.6 million to three advanced nuclear technology projects. The projects are cost-shared.

The awards are through the Office of Nuclear Energy’s (NE) funding opportunity announcement (FOA) US Industry Opportunities for Advanced Nuclear Technology Development. This is the fourth round of funding through this FOA. The first group was announced on 27 April, the second group was announced on 10 July , the third group was announced on 13 November 2018, and the fourth group was announced on 27 March 2019. The total of the five rounds of awards is approximately $128 million. Subsequent quarterly application review and selection processes will be conducted over the next four years.

The solicitation is broken into three funding pathways:

  1. First-of-a-Kind (FOAK) Nuclear Demonstration Readiness Project pathway, intended to address major advanced reactor design development projects or complex technology advancements for existing plants which have significant technical and licensing risk and have the potential to be deployed by the mid-to-late 2020s.

  2. Advanced Reactor Development Projects pathway, which allows a broad scope of proposed concepts and ideas that are best suited to improving the capabilities and commercialization potential of advanced reactor designs and technologies.

  3. Regulatory Assistance Grants pathway, which provide direct support for resolving design regulatory issues, regulatory review of licensing topical reports or papers, and other efforts focused on obtaining certification and licensing approvals for advanced reactor designs and capabilities.

The following two projects were selected under the Advanced Reactor Development Projects pathway:

  • Advanced Remote Monitoring – Under this proposal, Utilities Service Alliance, Inc. is to research, develop, and deploy automation and advanced remote monitoring technology into the United States nuclear fleet to achieve economic viability while maintaining or improving safety and reliability.
    DOE Funding: $9,183,255; Non-DOE: $4,081,445; Total: $13,264,700

  • STPNOC FIRE PRA 2019 – Under this proposal, STP Nuclear Operating Company is to develop and implement advanced Fire PRA modeling techniques that will remove existing conservatism and lead to realistic models to be used in the nuclear industry.
    DOE Funding: $942,477; Non-DOE: $235,619; Total Value: $1,178,096

The following project was selected under the Regulatory Assistance Grant pathway:

  • Software Verification and Validation Guidelines for Nonlinear Soil-Structure Interaction Analysis to Enable Cost-Effective Advanced Reactor Design - SC Solutions will develop a nonlinear soil-structure interaction analysis software verification and validation guidance document as a critical tool to facilitate cost reductions in nuclear plant licensing and construction.
    DOE Funding: $470,483; Non-DOE: $117,621; Total Value: $588,104

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