The MoU centres on the DOE’s new National Reactor Innovation Cengre initiative which was established to accelerate commercialisation by helping private companies test and demonstrate advanced nuclear technologies.
The agreement couples the research capabilities of the DOE’s National Laboratories with the regulatory expertise of the NRC to help the development and licensing of advanced reactors.
“The US has the technology, expertise and facilities to lead the world in developing next-generation reactors,” said assistant secretary for nuclear energy Rita Baranwal. “This partnership between the DOE and the NRC is a crucial step forward in making sure US nuclear technologies are available, both domestically and abroad, as soon as possible to bring clean and reliable energy to everyone around world.”
According to the agreement, the DOE and the NRC will share technical information and expertise. In addition, the NRC will have access to capabilities developed through NRIC, including high-performance computers and modelling codes, to support licensing of advanced nuclear reactors. The NRC will also have access to DOE facilities to observe the research, development, and demonstration of innovative nuclear technologies.
In return, the NRC will provide the DOE and the nuclear community with information on its regulations, guidance and licensing processes for new or advanced nuclear reactor technologies.