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    KGHM moves closer to SMRs with NuScale Power project certified in US

    In February last year, KGHM entered into a contract with NuScale Power, a United States-based business, to begin the process of introducing small modular reactors (SMRs) in Poland. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission of the United States has now approved the technology provided by NuScale Power, making it the first SMR project to be certified in the US and the seventh globally among all nuclear technologies.


    “At KGHM, we are closely following the development of SMR technology around the world. The U.S. regulator’s decision is a landmark moment that definitely brings us closer to realizing our own nuclear plans. It is an important signal for us, confirming that small modular reactors are not just a vision of the future, but the most feasible answer to the energy needs of large industry,”

    Tomasz Zdzikot, CEO of KGHM Polska Miedź S.A., points out.

    “KGHM partner’s technology – NuScale Power – certified by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission. This is the first SMR project approved for use in the States. It’s also an important signal that SMR is not just a vision of the future but also a step closer to realizing our plans,”

    the President and CEO of KGHM S.A. wrote on Twitter. 

    In the nuclear power industry, project certification is carried out to minimize investment risk. 

    “The final certificate obtained by NuScale Power provides a guarantee to investors that the findings contained therein are binding,”

    stresses Prof. Ludwik Pieńkowski, an expert at KGHM. 

    “Its issuance by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is the final step in a process that began in January 2017 for 50 MW modules and a modular unit with a total capacity of 600 MW consisting of 12 modules. NuScale Power’s modified design calls for the power units to be equipped with 77 MW modules and the NRC has just launched its certification process,”

    he adds.

    Groundbreaking technology

    NuScale Power’s modular light-water reactor nuclear power plant technology, developed by NuScale Power, provides energy for power generation, district heating, desalination, hydrogen production and other process heat applications. This groundbreaking solution is the only one among small modular reactor technologies to receive certification from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

    “The issuance of official certification by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for NuScale Power’s Small Modular Nuclear Reactor (SMR) is a historic step bringing us closer to a future where the world will be powered exclusively by clean energy. The NRC certification makes NuScale’s VOYGR™ nuclear power plant a solution that is ready for deployment by our customers in the short term,”

    said NuScale Power President and Chief Executive Officer John Hopkins.

    Read also ⤵️

    NRC Certifies First U.S. Small Modular Reactor Design

    Part of the transformation

    In July 2022, KGHM submitted an application to the State Atomic Energy Agency (PAA) for a general opinion on selected conditions to allow the construction of a 462 MW modular nuclear power plant consisting of 6 modules, each with a capacity of 77 MW. The request was prepared based, among other things, on documentation for the project, which has just received final certification in the United States.

    The small nuclear reactor project is directly related to KGHM’s Climate Policy, whose main goals are to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and achieve climate neutrality by 2050.

    KGHM’s ambition is to effectively increase the share of renewable energy sources and in-house production in meeting its energy needs. The company has its own low-carbon generation sources powered by gas fuel. It is also developing renewable energy projects, including photovoltaic power plants on KGHM-owned land.

    It is worth noting that a survey conducted by the Ministry of Climate and Environment shows that as many as 74 per cent of Poles support the construction of nuclear power plants in the country.


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