A Dozen Nuclear Reactor Designs Under Regulatory Review in Canada

There are dozen nuclear reactors that in applying or in the process of getting vendor design reviews from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.

The VDR is divided into three phases, each requiring increasingly more detailed technical information:
• Phase 1: Compliance with regulatory requirements. The conceptual design is expected to be completed and described. For a discrete set of focus areas, CNSC staff assess how the vendor’s design processes demonstrate intent to meet CNSC requirements.
• Phase 2: Identification of potential fundamental barriers to licensing. Subsequent to Phase 1, this phase goes into further detail, with a focus on identifying whether there are any potential fundamental barriers to licensing.
• Phase 3: A follow-up to Phase 2. This phase focuses on a more detailed review of selected focus areas identified by the vendor that pertain to a license to construct.

There are several nuclear reactor designs that have completed pre-licensing reviews.

Completed vendor pre-licensing vendor design reviews
Note: Due to the commercially sensitive and proprietary information in the full report, the CNSC is only able to post the Executive Summaries.

For any detailed information concerning the results of a VDR, please contact the associated vendor.

SMR, LLC. – SMR-160:
Phase 1 Pre-Licensing Vendor Design Review Executive Summary: SMR, LLC. (August 2020)

SMR LLC is designing a 160 MW(e) (525 MW(th)) light-water reactor, the SMR-160. The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC), as Canada’s nuclear regulator, under the authority of the Nuclear Safety and Control Act, entered into an agreement with SMR LLC to conduct a Phase 1 pre-licensing vendor design review (VDR) of the SMR-160 light-water reactor design.

ARC Nuclear Canada Inc. – ARC-100:
Phase 1 Pre-Licensing Vendor Design Review Executive Summary: ARC Nuclear Canada Inc. (October 2019)

Advanced Reactor Concepts (ARC) Nuclear Canada Inc. (ARC Canada Inc.) is designing a 286 megawatt thermal sodium-cooled fast reactor, ARC-100, with a net nominal electrical output of approximately 100 megawatts.

Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation – MMR:
Phase 1 Pre-Licensing Vendor Design Review Executive Summary: Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation (USNC) (February 2019)

Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation (USNC) is designing a 15-thermal-megawatt micro modular reactor (MMR), with a net electrical output of approximately 5 megawatts. The MMR concept draws on operational experience from the high-temperature gas-cooled reactors developed by the U.S., Germany, China and Japan.

In May 2016, the CNSC and USNC signed a service agreement for the conduct of a Phase 1 VDR of the MMR.

Terrestrial Energy Inc. – IMSR 400:
Phase 1 Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of Terrestrial Energy’s 400-thermal-megawatt integral molten salt reactor (IMSR400) (PDF, November 2017)

The CNSC has completed a Phase 1 VDR of the Terrestrial Energy Inc. (TEI) 400-thermal megawatt integral molten salt reactor (IMSR400).

Candu Energy* – EC 6 (Enhanced CANDU):
On October 2, 2011, SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. acquired certain assets of AECL’s commercial operations. The business operates as a wholly owned subsidiary called Candu Energy Inc.

Phase 1 Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of AECL’s Enhanced Candu – EC 6 (PDF, April 2010)
Phase 2: Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of Candu Energy’s Enhanced Candu – EC 6 (PDF, April 2012)
Phase 3: Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of Candu Energy’s EC6TM Reactor Design (PDF, June 2013)

Westinghouse – AP1000:
Phase 1 Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of Westinghouse’s Advanced Passive Plant Design (AP1000TM) (PDF, January 2010)
Phase 2: Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of Westinghouse’s Advanced Passive Plan Design (AP1000TM) (PDF, June 2013)

ATMEA – ATMEA1:
Phase 1: Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of ATMEA’s ATEMA1 Reactor (PDF, June 2013)

AREVA – EPR:
Phase 1 Review terminated effective December 27, 2012

AECL – ACR-1000:
Phase 1 Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of AECL’s Advanced CANDU Reactor (ACR-1000) (PDF, December 2008)
Phase 2 Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of AECL’s Advanced CANDU Reactor (ACR-1000) (PDF, August 2009)
Phase 3 Executive Summary: Pre-Project Review of AECL’s Advanced CANDU Reactor (ACR-1000) (PDF, December 2010)

SOURCES – Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com