The US Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded three grants to support the installation of a NuScale reactor plant simulator at each of Oregon State University, Texas A&M University-College Station and the University of Idaho.
When completed, the simulator facilities will be used for research, education, K-12 outreach and public advocacy regarding nuclear power and small modular reactor (SMR) technology.
NuScale’s reactor simulator is a virtual nuclear power plant control room that provides US universities and national laboratories with the ability to observe nuclear plant behavior from the control room. These simulators, based on NuScale’s simulator technology and computer models, will include a simulator interface that accepts input from operators in a virtual control room and displays parameters simulating the plant response.
The simulator facilitates research into human factors engineering, human-system interface design, advanced diagnostics, cyber security and plant control room automation. In addition to supporting STEM research and education at universities, NuScale’s simulator can be used to show students and members of the public advanced nuclear technology in a control room setting.
Lead collaborators from each of the partner universities include Qiao Wu, Ph.D. (Oregon State University), Yassin Hassan, Ph.D. (Texas A&M University) and Richard Christensen, Ph.D. (University of Idaho).
NuScale’s technology is the world’s first and only SMR to undergo design certification review by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The NRC is scheduled to complete its review of NuScale’s design in September 2020.