Office of Nuclear Energy

DOE Office of Nuclear Energy Announces Agreement Supporting Power Generated from Small Modular Reactors

December 21, 2018

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Nuclear Energy (NE) today announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between DOE, Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS), and Battelle Energy Alliance (BEA) to reflect the importance of resilient power generated from small modular reactors (SMRs).

Specifically, this MOU highlights the Department's intent to draw from two modules of a twelve-module SMR plant intended for construction at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) under UAMPS’ Carbon Free Power Project (CFPP). One module will be designated strictly for research activities (referred to as the Joint Use Modular Plant or JUMP program). The research is expected to focus principally on integrated energy systems that support the production of both electricity and non-electric energy products. The other module may be used in a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to provide power to INL.

“This agreement will allow DOE to meet its needs in the form of resilient power to a national security mission-based lab while drawing from our nation’s newest class of advanced reactors,” said Ed McGinnis, NE Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary. “The JUMP program provides a unique opportunity for the nation’s leading nuclear laboratory to conduct nuclear energy research, and contribute to the successful commercialization of the nation’s first SMR.”

The key components of the MOU are:

  • BEA and UAMPS intend to sign an agreement to use one of the NuScale Power Modules (NPMs) for INL research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) activities under the JUMP program.  
  • DOE and UAMPS intend to work together to engage the local utility, Idaho Power, regarding the supply of power produced by the project to support INL’s energy needs. INL will need up to 70 MW of power in the 2025-2030 timeframe.

For more information on this project, click here.