Leading the Way
® power plants in the late 2020s.
In early 2016, Terrestrial Energy began the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s Vendor Design Review process and successfully completed Phase 1 of that process in November 2017, an industry first for an advanced nuclear power plant. In October 2018, Terrestrial Energy started Phase 2 and expects to complete the CNSC’s Vendor Design Review process in mid-2022.
IMSR® plant pre-application U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission activities commenced in November 2018 with the support of U.S. Department of Energy grant funding.
IMSR® plants will use standard nuclear fuel. For the last 50 years, this has been “standard-assay” low-enriched uranium (less than 5 percent U-235) fuel and is the only nuclear fuel commercially available today. This is a critically important commercial feature for near-term deployment. It is a distinguishing attribute of IMSR® technology in the Generation IV fission technology sector today.
Building on Proven Technology
Glenn Seaborg starting up the Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment (MSRE) in 1968, with Chief Engineer J.R. “Dick” Engel at hand to assist.
The IMSR® plant is truly innovative. It uses prototyped, proven and demonstrated Generation IV molten salt fission technology. This Molten Salt Reactor (MSR) technology is closely related to MSR technology pioneered at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee.
Oak Ridge has developed MSR technology over many decades, building and demonstrating two experimental MSRs: first the Aircraft Reactor Experiment (ARE) and next the Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment (MSRE). Based on the successes of these operating reactor experiments, ORNL commenced a commercial power plant program for MSR technology, which led to the Denatured Molten Salt Reactor (DMSR) in the early 1980s. Terrestrial Energy’s IMSR® is a close relative to the DMSR.