The Nuclear Regulatory Commission said Friday it has directed its staff to issue a final rule certifying NuScale’s small modular reactor design in the United States.
This is the “1st and only SMR design to receive U.S. N.R.C. approval,” NuScale said in a tweet Friday.
In addition, NuScale has “18 signed and active MOUs with potential customers in 11 countries,” the tweet continued.
NuScale is working with the Carbon Free Power Project, a wholly owned subsidiary of Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems, to deploy the first-of-its-kind SMR plant at the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory. NuScale expects the project will come online in 2029.
NRC’s design approval comes amid rising interest in nuclear energy as a tool for reaching ambitious decarbonization goals.
“NRC certification means the design meets the agency’s applicable safety requirements. An application for a nuclear power plant combined license that references a certified design will not need to address any of the issues resolved by the design certification rule,” the commission said in a statement. “Instead, the combined license application and the NRC’s safety review would address any remaining safety and environmental issues for the proposed nuclear power plant,” the statement continued.
NuScale’s small modular reactor contains 12 modules, each of which produces 50 MW. The company submitted an application to the NRC on Dec. 31, 2016, to certify the design for use in the U.S.
The certification will go into effect 30 days after NRC publishes the rule in the Federal Register.
This will be the seventh reactor design certified by the NRC, following the advanced boiling water reactor, System 80+, AP600, AP1000, the economic simplified boiling water reactor and the APR1400.
NuScale is scheduled to report its second quarter 2022 financial results on Aug. 10. NuScale’s stock price was up about 6% Monday morning.