X-energy selected power equipment firm Curtiss-Wright as preferred supplier to support the design and deployment of X-energy’s Xe-100 nuclear small modular reactor (SMR).
Under the agreement, Curtiss-Wright will provide critical systems for the nuclear steam supply system, including:
- The helium circulator system, which transfers heat generated in the reactor core to a steam generator, where steam is produced to generate electricity or provide process heat for industrial applications
- The fuel handling system, which performs continuous defueling and refueling of the reactor; loading fresh fuel and discharging spent fuel as required
- The reactivity control and safe shutdown system, which controls the outlet temperature of the reactor and provides a redundant shut down mechanism when required
Subsequent to its selection in the bid process, Curtiss-Wright committed to a taking minority equity stake in X-energy.
Rockville-based X-energy’s Xe-100 is a Generation IV, high-temperature gas-cooled reactor built on decades of research and development. Xe-100 is an 80 MWe (scalable to a 320 MWe four-pack) high temperature gas-cooled reactor.
The SMR uses TRi-structural ISOtropic particle fuel (TRISO), called “the most robust nuclear fuel on earth” by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) because it can withstand very high temperatures in the reactor and cannot melt.
In 2020, the reactor technology was selected by the DOE’s Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program (ARDP) to receive initial funding as part of a $3.2 billion program to develop and build advanced SMRs that can be operational by the end of the decade.
X-energy plans to build one of its advanced nuclear reactors with Energy Northwest in Washington state.
This post appeared first on Power Engineering.