Offshore SMR would feature coastal construction and decommissioning

October 31, 2022, 12:00PMNuclear News
Conceptual layout and deployment of a Prodigy SMR Marine Power Station with 12 NuScale Power Modules. (Graphic: Business Wire)

NuScale Power and Prodigy Clean Energy announced on October 26 that they have developed a conceptual design for a transportable, marine-based small modular reactor. The companies plan to present the design to utilities, regulators, and shipyard manufacturers. Prodigy, a Canadian company “specializing in the development of transportable nuclear power plants,” and NuScale signed a memorandum of understanding in 2018 agreeing to pursue the development of an SMR marine facility.

The concept: Prodigy’s SMR Marine Power Station could be scaled to contain from one to a dozen 77-MWe NuScale Power Modules, for a total possible output of 924 MWe. The plant would be deployed within a protected harbor and connected to shoreside transmission and process heat systems, and the pressurized water reactor modules would be fueled after the entire plant was in place, according to the companies. At the end of its life, the plant—which would not be self-propelled—could be transported by water to a marine-accessible center for decommissioning.

The manufacturing and outfitting of the entire floating power plant could be performed in a shipyard, enabling expedited delivery, according to the companies. NuScale and Prodigy also point to minimized site preparation, reduced environmental impact, and simplified decommissioning and site recovery as some of the potential advantages of a floating power plant design.

They said it: “NuScale is extremely proud to continue this partnership with Prodigy, as utilization of a transportable marine facility will enable us to deploy the NuScale Power Module at more locations around the world,” said John Hopkins, NuScale Power president and chief executive officer. “By combining Prodigy’s technologies with NuScale’s safe, scalable, and innovative SMR design, we are confident in our ability to deliver our carbon-free and cost-competitive SMR technology globally.”

“It is our privilege to partner with NuScale to expand global access to clean, baseload energy generation. By packaging the [NuScale Power Module] into Prodigy’s marine facility, we will offer countries a near-term solution to address energy security and to decarbonize their economies, including replacing coal-fired plants—many of which are located at the coast,” said Mathias Trojer, Prodigy president and CEO.

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