A new report by the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) has revealed small modular reactors (SMR) could be in operation in the UK by 2030.
Titled “Preparing for Deployment of a UK Small Modular Reactor by 2030”, the report suggests the UK Government will have to increase investor confidence by delivering an SMR policy framework.
The report states deploying SMRs as combined heat and power (CHP) plants will result in flexibility and could deliver low-carbon heat to district heating networks. This will open new potential sites and help decarbonise energy use in buildings.
ETI's nuclear strategy manager and report author Mike Middleton said: “Our analysis shows it is possible to have a first-of-a-kind SMR operating by 2030 if SMR developers, SMR vendors, the government, and regulators work together in an integrated programme.
“Creating the right environment for increasing investor confidence is critical if this schedule is to be met; there will be a key role for government in the first five years of any such programme to deliver an SMR policy framework which progressively reduces investor risk.
“We have carried out further design and cost assessments, which reconfirm the attractiveness of deploying SMR as CHP plants linked to district heating systems identifying further carbon savings and cost benefits.”
ETI is a private partnership between global energy and engineering companies and the UK Government. It acts as a bridge between academia, industry, and the government to speed up the development of low-carbon technologies.
Image: ETI report suggests SMR could be operating in the UK by 2030. Photo: courtesy of Energy Technologies Institute LLP.