Lightbridge is developing two fuel product families for power uprates in existing and new build reactors:
* All-Uranium, seed-and-blanket fuel technology – up to 17% power uprate in existing PWRs;
* All-metal fuel technology – up to 30% power uprate in new build PWRs.
In the third quarter of 2011, the team completed a preliminary scoping study confirming, in principle, the feasibility of performing irradiation of our metallic fuel samples in the ATR (Advanced Test Reactor). As a result, INL (Idaho National Labs) has now begun performing a more detailed technical design of the experiment and specific operating conditions. This detailed analysis will provide input into a safety analysis report, which is key prerequisite for the irradiation experiment. We expect the safety analysis to be completed in 2012.
Continued planning and preparations for loop irradiation testing of the Lightbridge-designed metallic fuel samples in the MIR research reactor at Research Institute of Atomic Reactors (Dimitrovgrad, Russia). The planning and preparatory work is currently underway. We expect to begin negotiations of a specific agreement for the planned loop irradiation testing with RIAR in the first half of 2012.
Began negotiations with a US fuel fabrication partner relating to metal fuel fabrication process development and demonstration work in the United States. We expect the negotiations to conclude later this year.
Lightbridge has recently received a letter from the US Department of Energy (DOE) confirming that our proposed collaborative projects with Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation “Rosatom” fall under the 123 agreement that we understand has satisfied Rosatom’s requirements. The DOE letter was one of the key prerequisites for Rosatom before commercial negotiations relating to our proposed collaboration could commence.
Completed a preliminary core design for our selected PWR reference plant operating at a 17% power uprate and an 18-month fuel cycle using Lightbridge-designed all-uranium seed and blanket fuel. We now plan to perform further optimization studies for the core design.