Estonia to assess Rolls-Royce consortium SMRs

Rolls-Royce and Fermi Energia have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to study the potential deployment of small modular reactors (SMR) in Estonia.

(Image: Rolls-Royce)

The study will include grid suitability, cooling, emergency planning, human resources, licensing feasibility, economics and supply chain.

Comment: SMRs will supercharge UK’s net zero ambitions

Rolls-Royce is leading a consortium in the design of SMRs that will be composed of standardised, factory-made components that can then be assembled rapidly inside a weatherproof canopy on site to avoid disruptions to the building schedule. Rolls-Royce said the consortium is working with its partners and UK government to secure a commitment for a fleet of SMRs that would be operational within a decade and provide at least 440MW of electricity each.

In a statement, Tom Samson, interim CEO of the UKSMR consortium, said: “Nuclear power is central to tackling climate change, economic recovery and energy security. To do this it must be affordable, reliable and investable and the way we manufacture and assemble our power station brings its cost down to be comparable with offshore wind. It also stimulates jobs and growth and with the flexibility to power alternative low carbon fuels manufacture as well as providing grid power, it is the best option for underpinning decarbonisation strategies around the world.

“It’s a compelling proposition that has a clear role to play in Estonia’s low carbon energy future and we’re…working with Fermi Energia to find ways to make that happen as soon as possible.

The power stations will be built by the UKSMR consortium and operated by power generation companies.

Fermi Energia is a company founded by nuclear scientists, energy experts and entrepreneurs to bring small modular reactors to Estonia.

Company founder and CEO said: “Fermi Energia is looking at Small Modular Reactor designs with credible technical, financial and political commitment to have First of a Kind deployment this decade. Rolls-Royce SMR certainly fits the bill with strong UK government commitment on carbon neutrality and nuclear energy with appropriate national financing on Rolls-Royce SMR development.

“Estonia and the United Kingdom have enjoyed a century of friendship and cooperation that we hope can be carried into the field of nuclear energy for the 21st century. Fermi Energia will consider Rolls-Royce SMR as one of the credible SMR designs in its national designated spatial planning procedure.”