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Rolls-Royce to bring small modular reactors to the Netherlands

The signing ceremony was held last week, with Dirk Rabelink on the right (Rolls-Royce)
British manufacturer Rolls-Royce has signed a deal with Dutch nuclear company ULC-Energy to supply small modular reactors (SMRs) to the Netherlands.

The companies will collaborate on deploying the SMR design that Rolls-Royce and Canadian engineer Atkins have been working on since 2015.

Dirk Rabelink, chief executive of ULC-Energy, said: “Challenging energy market conditions, particularly in Western Europe, have clarified the importance of having reliable and affordable energy systems.

“The Rolls-Royce SMR is ideally suited for the Dutch market. At 470MW, and with a capacity factor greater than 95%, each unit will make a meaningful difference and can be deployed efficiently to either supply power to the grid, or supply power and heat to dedicated industrial users.”

Rolls-Royce said 90% of its SMRs are built in factory conditions, which cuts the on-site risks of building conventional nuclear plants.

Rolls-Royce expects to get regulatory approval for its SMR design by mid-2024, with a view to selling units in 2029.

Back in 2017, the company estimated that its design could produce electricity for as little as £60 per megawatt hour, compared with a price of €1,000 in today’s abnormal conditions.

Rolls-Royce received £210m from the UK government last year, with another £250m coming from private sources including Qatar’s wealth fund.

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