NuScale Submits Next Regulatory Step in Canada for Modular SMR Reactor Design

NuScale Power today announced its first submittal to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) for pre-licensing vendor design review (VDR) of NuScale’s innovative small modular reactor (SMR) design. This submission reflects the substantive work that NuScale continues to accomplish in the regulatory field as the company is simultaneously bringing the U.S.’s first NuScale power plant into production and operation by 2026.

NuScale’s technology is the world’s first and only SMR to undergo design certification review by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). On December 12, 2019 the company announced the NRC completion of Phase 4 of its SMR design certification application (DCA). Completion of Phase 4 is significant as it indicates near-completion of the technical review, and the entire review of NuScale’s design is in Phases 5 and 6. With the VDR submission to the CNSC, NuScale is eager to ensure that its revolutionary SMR technology meets both Canadian regulatory requirements and the needs of its customers.

NuScale’s VDR will be completed in four submittals. The first submittal occurred on December 10, 2019. NuScale’s submission is a combined Phase 1 and 2 level VDR, as the company’s SMR design is mature and can directly enter VDR Phase 2. The remaining three submittals will be conducted at approximately six month intervals.

Submittal 1 addresses four of the 19 topic areas of the VDR. These four topics were chosen because they provide the foundation for the remaining topics in a VDR:

Topic 1 – General Plant Description
Topic 2 – SSC Classification
Topic 16 – Vendor Research and Development Program
Topic 17 – Design Process and Quality Assurance

“We chose these four topic areas as they provide a solid foundation for the review by covering the overall unprecedented safety of the design, our extensive research and development programs, and that we have the quality assurance and other management systems in place to satisfy the CNSC,” said NuScale Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Tom Bergman. “Completion of the vendor design review provides assurance to both the regulator and potential customers that the NuScale design will be acceptable to build and operate in Canada.”

NuScale has signed an agreement with Bruce Power to develop a business case to support the company’s efforts to bring its innovative and unique SMR technology to Canada. Bruce Power is supporting evaluation, planning, and licensing activities, all of which will serve an important role in demonstrating the business case for why NuScale’s technology is the right choice for Ontario and Canada. As well, Ontario Power Generation participates on the NuScale Advisory Board and provides advice on potential deployment of NuScale technology in Canada, SMR licensing in Canada, and the CNSC vendor design review process. NuScale’s work with both companies is a strong endorsement of the growing enthusiasm in Canada for the company’s pioneering SMR technology.

11 thoughts on “NuScale Submits Next Regulatory Step in Canada for Modular SMR Reactor Design”

  1. You’re 100% right. Congress and the DoE think having some sort of minimum nuclear energy R&D going is worth the billions of potential losses – and NuScale is the only one currently going through the approval process.
    They blew 8 billion on the shelved plutonium reprocessing plant like it was nothing. By comparison this is very low risk – if NuScale screws up the the two or four of the twelve pack and goes way over budget, just cancel it and at least get 25% of a power plant.
    It’s no business plan just socialism.

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  2. Yes there’s that also. I’m confident it will be funded/built – the suspense is seeing what the price drop will be from the first couple to last couple of that dozen (and build speed). Proving out Wrights Law for modular nuclear would be a huge win, easily overcoming the downside of poor nuclear fuel efficiency of that design.

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  3. I recall that for NuScale reactors the federal nuclear production tax credit (for the next ~3GW of new capacity not counting Vogtle 3&4) would pay out $8 million per NuScale reactor module for ten years so $80 million per module.

    It is a powerful incentive once NuScale gets past FOAK and people know it won’t be an AP1000 redux.

    The tax credit is good for at least three 12 reactor NuScale plants.

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  4. Ever see so much review and approval without a list of customers waiting? The UAMPS project at INL is perhaps likely, but not guaranteed. Fluor has gone through great lengths to license something no customer is particularly interested in buying.

    Sad. This investment is unlikely to give much return for Fluor. No vendor ever made a dollar building a nuke plant just like GE sells turbofans at a loss to Boeing only to gain a revenue stream for maintenance over the engine’s lifetime.

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  5. Hope so. Its diificult to have much faith in the Boris government, but they do seem to be behind fusion and SMRs (As well as full steam ahead on windfarms).

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