Claiming Canada has the world’s ripest market for small modular reactors (SMR) for domestic use, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories said Tuesday that it was launching a new initiative to accelerate development and deployment of the groundbreaking SMR technology.
The announcement, made during the U.S. Nuclear Industry Council’s New Nuclear Capital meeting in Washington, D.C., included a pledge to issue and annual call for proposals that fall “within the designated focus areas, including market analysis, fuel development, reactor physics modeling, transportation and more,” the CNL said.
One goal of the initiative is to share resources while streamlining efforts. “Participants will be able to optimize resources, share technical knowledge, and have access to CNL’s expertise to help advance the commercialization of SMR technologies.”
CNL has already set its sights on having a demonstration SMR project operational by 2026. The agency sees the SMR as an ideal low-carbon energy source for both isolated communities and isolated industries, such as mining operations. “Both smaller in size and energy output, SMR are considered ideal for deployment both on-grid and off-grid in remote locations such as mine sites or the oil sands,” the CNL website says.
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It was just a few years ago (or so it seems) that CNL received a half-billion dollars to design, construct and operate medical isotope production reactors (the MAPLE reactors). That project ended with no operating reactors as CNL couldn't get them licensed to operate. Why would anyone think CNL will succeed this time?