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NuScale Power secures investment, support for SMR deployment from IHI

NuScale Power finalized an investment agreement with IHI, a comprehensive heavy-industry engineering and manufacturing company headquartered in Japan. As part of a commercial relationship with NuScale, IHI will provide cash investment in NuScale Power. The IHI-NuScale relationship results in IHI becoming a strategic supplier for NuScale Plants, whereby IHI will be a preferred supplier of certain manufactured components for NuScale Plants globally.

The announcement signals the second commercial relationship and investment in NuScale Power from a Japanese-based company, following the recent agreement with JGC Holdings Corporation, and is indicative of growing Japanese and global interest in NuScale’s groundbreaking small modular reactor (SMR) technology, the company said.

Strategic partnership with an innovative SMR technology developer such as NuScale is a great opportunity for us. IHI wants to support the move toward a carbon-neutral economy, and NuScale’s technology is safe, clean, reliable and closest to commercialization among its competitors. IHI can support rapid deployment of NuScale’s technology by leveraging IHI’s extensive engineering and manufacturing experience in the nuclear industry.

—Hiroshi Ide, President and Chief Executive Officer of IHI Corporation

NuScale’s SMR is the first and only design to ever receive approval from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission and maintains strong momentum towards the commercialization of its SMR technology by the end of this decade. NuScale and Fluor are currently working for Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS) to bring the world’s first clean energy, carbon-free SMR project to commercialization.

The small modular reactor (SMR) design features a fully factory-fabricated NuScale Power Module capable of generating 77 MW of electricity using a safer, smaller, and scalable version of pressurized water reactor technology. NuScale's scalable design—power plants can house up to four, six, or 12 individual power modules. The majority investor in NuScale is Fluor Corporation, a global engineering, procurement, and construction company with a 70-year history in commercial nuclear power.



I have been looking at the potential of hydrogen from nuclear quite a lot lately, in view of the massive Chinese build of new coal power plants.

The build seems to be the result of regional authorities having different priorities to the central government, and putting jobs etc first, in spite of the central government being on board about AGW, with China's history of the massive impacts of climate in flooding etc.

The build means that the present low capacity of coal plant operation of around 49% is likely to drop, even supposing a 4% annual increase in coal fired energy use, to a disastrous 32% by 2030, when in reality coal is uneconomic even now against nuclear, and likely renewables depending on how intermittency is allowed for.

But HTRs can be drop in replacements for the coal burning parts of a coal plant, using the rest of the transmission and cooling etc.

Here is a rather old Polish study on conversion costs:


The upshot is that you save around 30% of the cost of a new build, which sounds a decent ball park estimate even though the study is so old and technologies have changed.

I am unsure of the space requirements for Nuscale, but otherwise it sounds a good fit for this.

And if the heat is not used for district heating, hydrogen production from an HTR is very efficient, and means that the cost can be amortised over more hours.

A heck of a way to drastically reduce carbon emissions.

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