SEOUL -- In cooperation with its American partner, Holtec International, Hyundai Engineering & Construction, a major builder affiliated with South Korea's Hyundai auto group, has embarked on the detailed design of a standard model for the commercialization of a small modular reactor that allows for less on-site construction, increased containment efficiency, and enhanced safety.
In November 2021, Hyundai E&C partnered with Holtec International, which specializes in the design and manufacture of parts for nuclear reactors, to jointly develop a commercialization model, promote joint projects and participate in marketing and bidding together. Holtec's SMR-160 is a pressurized water reactor with a capacity of 160 MWe that does not rely on any pumps or motors to remove heat from the nuclear fuel.
Under a new agreement with Holtec, Hyundai E&C said it would participate in detailed design necessary for the installation of SMR-160 considering the local natural environment such as climate, temperature, and humidity. The two companies would use data accumulated during their design work to apply for U.S. government permission. SMR-160, selected by the U.S. Department of Energy for a next-generation reactor demonstration program, can be installed on small sites and linked to existing small modular nuclear power plants.
Hyundai E&C said that SMR-160 would be nurtured as a representative model of the global nuclear power plant business. "We will strengthen our position as an energy market game changer by combining the world's best technology and business capabilities," Hyundai E&C CEO Yoon Young-joon said in a statement on October 19.
The builder has partnered with Holtec to participate in the decommissioning of defunct nuclear power plants, starting with the Indian Point Energy Center in Buchanan in Westchester County. Indian Point's three-unit nuclear power plant station shut down at the end of April 2021 after 45 years of operation. Holtec's decommissioning plans for Indian Point include moving used nuclear fuel from pools into a dry storage system, and dismantling and packaging highly activated parts from the nuclear reactors in high-capacity containers.
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