Posted: Nov 17, 2021 11:44 GMT
The Natrium project, which will replace a coal-fired power plant, will receive about $ 1.9 billion from the US government for financing.
TerraPower, an advanced nuclear power company founded by American billionaire Bill Gates, announced Tuesday that it will build in the state of Wyoming. a demonstration plant that will cost about $ 4 billion and it will obtain half of its financing from the Government of the North American country. The facility will be located in the remote town of Kemmerer, where the Naughton coal-fired power plant is due to close in 2025.
According to the company, the Natrium project, developed together with the nuclear services provider GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, will have a 345 megawatt fast reactor cooled by sodium with an energy storage system based on molten salts, which will be able to increase power of the system up to 500 megawatts. This equates to the energy required to supply 400,000 households and will allow the plant to integrate with renewable resources.
“Our innovative technology will help ensure the continuous production of reliable electricity while transitioning our energy system and creating new, high-paying jobs in Wyoming,” said Chris Levesque, President and CEO of TerraPower.
“A very serious government grant“
The project will receive about 1.9 billion dollars from the federal government, of which 1.5 billion correspond to the bipartisan infrastructure bill that Joe Biden signed this week and which includes 2.5 billion dollars for advanced nuclear reactors. “It is a very serious government subsidy,” Levesque was quoted as saying by .. “This was necessary because the government and the nuclear industry in the United States were lagging behind,” he added.
For her part, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm pointed out that the new facility would give hope to a city where a coal plant will be closed. “The energy communities that have supplied us for generations have real opportunities to power our clean energy future through projects like this,” he said.
The Natrium plant is expected to opens in 2028, within the term established by the US Congress. According to estimates, approximately 2,000 workers will be needed to build the project at its peak, and once the plant is operational, about 250 people, including facility security personnel, will work there.
Gates initially planned to build an experimental nuclear plant near Beijing with the state-owned China National Nuclear Corp. However, TerraPower was forced to seek new partners after the Administration of then-President Donald Trump restricted nuclear deals with the Asian giant. .
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