Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP), ARC Clean Technology and New Brunswick Power (NB Power) have signed a trilateral agreement that aims to establish a global fleet of SMRs.

The companies signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) last November to explore collaboration opportunities for the commercialisation of ARC’s ARC-100 SMR in Canada, South Korea, the US and other countries in which KHNP operates.

The new agreement, signed at the Reuters SMR and Advanced Reactor 2024 Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, ensures firm commitments to advance discussions on potential investment in the deployment of ARC units, beginning with the commercial demonstration unit in the Canadian province of New Brunswick.

ARC and NB Power have been working together on the development of ARC-100 since 2018. The two companies submitted an environmental impact assessment registration document as well as an application for a site preparation licence for an SMR at the Point Lepreau nuclear power plant site in New Brunswick. The unit is scheduled for commissioning in 2029.

KHNP CEO Joohoo Whang said: “While we focus our capabilities on technological development for Korea’s Innovative SMR (i-SMR) to have the highest level of competitiveness in the world, we are pushing for timely entry into the 4th generation SMR market. Global cooperation is necessary for accelerating the development and construction of 4th generation SMRs, and the strengths of the leading companies in Canada as well as KHNP will lead to synergy in cooperation.”

Lori Clark, NB Power president and chief nuclear officer, said: “Small modular reactors are an important part of NB Power’s strategic plan to meet government mandates to phase out coal by 2030 and achieve net-zero supply by 2035. The agreement with KHNP and ARC will assist us in deploying the clean energy we need to meet our climate goals and maintain energy security for New Brunswickers. In addition, we are excited about what this could mean for potential future commercialisation opportunities.”

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Last October, the Canadian Government granted ARC Clean Technology C$7m ($5.12m) to help build the SMR at Point Lepreau.