Westinghouse signed an agreement with the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission initiating a technical design assessment for the company’s eVinci nuclear microreactor.

The agreement starts a Vendor Design Review (VDR), which is a pre-licensing technical assessment of the eVinci microreactor design. Westinghouse said it would execute both Phases 1 and 2 of the VDR as a combined program, a sign, it said, of the eVinci microreactor’s “design and technology maturity.”

In December 2021, Westinghouse announced that it had filed a pre-application Regulatory Engagement Plan with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), detailing the planned pre-licensing application interactions for the eVinci micro-reactor. More than a year earlier, eVinci was awarded funding from the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DoD) Project Pele, a mobile nuclear reactor prototyping program.

In earlier development of eVinci, Westinghouse received $5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) for the development of a self-regulating solid core block (SCB) that employs solid materials to inherently self-regulate the reaction rate in a nuclear reactor. The development of the SCB is seen as a key component of Westinghouse’s eVinci micro reactor concept.

“Our state-of-the-art eVinci microreactor technology will unlock additional potential in remote communities and decentralized industrial sites,” said David Durham, President Energy Systems at Westinghouse. “Westinghouse’s nuclear battery technology can safely provide heat and power for more than eight years of continuous operations.”

The eVinci microreactor builds on decades of Westinghouse innovation and could serve in several applications: Electricity and heating for remote communities and islands, industrial sites, data centers, universities, defense facilities, marine propulsion, hydrogen generation and water purification.

Westinghouse touts the micro-reactor’s solid core and advanced heat pipes, which enable passive core heat extraction and allow for autonomous operation and load following capabilities. The reactor is designed to provide up to 5 MWe of combined heat and power.

According to the company, other benefits of eVinci include an easily transportable generator; a 40-year design life with three-plus year refueling interval; and a target of less than 30 days of on-site installation.

This post appeared first on Power Engineering.