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Another dodgy Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) set up to promote small nuclear reactors.

Nuclear SMR developer X-energy to merge with Ares Management-backed SPAC, creating $2B company, Utility Dive, Stephen Singer, Dec. 7, 2022

Dive Brief

  • X Energy Reactor Co., a developer of small modular nuclear reactors and fuel technology, is merging with a special purpose acquisition company backed by private equity firm Ares Management Corp., X-energy announced Tuesday. The deal would establish a combined publicly traded company valued at $2 billion.
  • The company will receive about $1 billion in cash in the trust account of Ares Acquisition Corp., the SPAC, assuming no redemptions by shareholders. Investments and financing commitments include $75 million from Ares Management and $45 million from Ontario Power Generation and Segra Capital Management. 

……………………… X-energy, based in Rockville, Maryland, is advancing nuclear generation through a high-temperature gas-cooled small modular reactor, or SMR, the Xe-100, and its fuel, TRISO-X. The reactor is engineered to operate as a single 80-MW unit and optimized as a four-unit plant delivering 320 MW.

……………………. Edwin Lyman, director of Nuclear Power Safety at the Union of Concerned Scientists, questioned the “fundamental economic justification” for SMRs.

“A small reactor is going to produce more expensive electricity than large ones,” he said.

Backers defend SMRs as benefiting from economies of scale, but that’s not been demonstrated, Lyman said. “It would require a large order book and experience,” he said.

…………………………. At the closing of the deal, which is expected in the second quarter of 2023, the combined company will be named X-Energy Inc. and will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.


December 7, 2022 - Posted by | business and costs, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, USA

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