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Rebranded – ROLLS-ROYCE SMR , a new conglomerate of 9 groups (to spread the risks of uneconomic small nuclear reactors?)

The nine-strong consortium also includes the National Nuclear Laboratory and Laing O’Rourke, the construction firm, alongside Assystem, SNC Lavalin/Atkins, Wood, BAM Nuttall, the Welding Institute and Nuclear AMRC.

UK poised to confirm funding for mini nuclear reactors for carbon-free energy Guardian, 

Rolls-Royce-led consortium already has £210m in private backing for plans to build 16 reactors across the country, 
The government is poised to approve funding for a fleet of Rolls-Royce mini nuclear reactors that the prime minister hopes will help the UK reach his target of zero-carbon electricity by 2035.

A consortium led by the British engineering firm had already secured £210m in backing from private investors for the small modular reactor (SMR) project, a sum that the government is expected to match or better. Confirmation is expected before the spending review on 27 October, according to well-placed sources.

The consortium, known as UK SMR, will rebrand as Rolls-Royce SMR to coincide with Westminster’s blessing.

Tom Greatrex, the chief executive of the Nuclear Industry Association (NIA), said: “Match-funding for Rolls-Royce would be a huge signal to private investors that the government wants SMRs alongside new large-scale stations to hit net zero. It would also show investors that the government believes in nuclear as a green technology.”

Backing from the government will pave the way for the consortium’s multibillion-pound plan to build 16 SMRs around the country, the first of which could be plugged into the grid by 2031…………..

Confirmed support for SMRs could signal a concerted effort within government to reverse the scheduled decline in the UK’s nuclear power capacity. About 20% of the nation’s electricity comes from 13 nuclear reactors capable of producing 7.8GW of power. But more than half of that capacity comes from reactors due to retire by 2025, and plans to replace them have stalled.

Toshiba pulled out of a plant at Moorside in Cumbria in 2020, and Hitachi withdrew planning consent for a project at Wylfa Newydd, on Anglesey, this year. While Hinkley Point C is due to start generating electricity from 2026, only one new project, Sizewell C, is now in the works, with no final investment decision yet made.

Britain’s ability to build new nuclear reactors has been further complicated by the government’s unwillingness to allow any further involvement from the state-backed China General Nuclear. CGN has a 20% stake in Sizewell C but ministers have been looking into ways to remove it from the project before it moves to the construction phase. The Chinese company was due to take a lead role in the Bradwell reactor in Suffolk, which is now highly unlikely to go ahead.

Industry players are keen to see the government legislate to approve the regulated asset base (RAB) model, which allows private investors a more reliable stream of revenues from nuclear power plants – which typically require tens of billions of pounds to build – by piling costs on to household energy bills……..

The nine-strong consortium also includes the National Nuclear Laboratory and Laing O’Rourke, the construction firm, alongside Assystem, SNC Lavalin/Atkins, Wood, BAM Nuttall, the Welding Institute and Nuclear AMRC.

October 16, 2021 - Posted by | business and costs, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, UK


  1. BAM Nuttall have got ‘form.’ Look up Cambridge Guided Bus Way.

    Comment by Chasquis (@furlingham) | October 16, 2021 | Reply

    • I ciould find only thisTen years after the Cambridgeshire Guided Busway opened, has it delivered on what was promised?

      Cambridge Guided Bus Way. The project cost £150 million instead of the budgeted £116 million, and the contractor still lost money.

      Alleged design and construction defects require repairs that could end up costing over £100 million – still the subject of litigation. Grade: F

      Patronage on busway services was climbing steadily before the pandemic struck, bucking the national trend.

      However, even discounting trips for the unbuilt part of Northstowe, the forecast for around 8,500 users each weekday in 2016 has still not been reached.

      Comment by Christina MacPherson | October 16, 2021 | Reply

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