GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) has teamed up with Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and Synthos Green Energy (SGE) for the deployment of its BWRX-300 small modular reactor (SMR).

Under the terms of the agreement, TVA, OPG and SGE will invest in the development of the BWRX-300 standard design and detailed design for key components.

According to GEH, the standard design development is expected to require a total investment of around $400m.

TVA, OPG and SGE have agreed to fund a part of the overall cost and form a Design Centre Working Group, which ensures the deployment of standard design in different locations.

GEH aims to expand the licensing and deployment of its BWRX-300 design in Canada, the US, Poland and beyond, in the long term.

GEH president and CEO Jay Wileman said: “I applaud the leadership shown by OPG, TVA and SGE in working together to advance the common design of the BWRX-300.

“This unprecedented collaboration, which spans three countries, will offer benefits to each of the team members and demonstrates confidence in the role that our SMR technology will play in helping nations meet decarbonisation and energy security goals.

“Building on our design-to-cost approach, this collaboration will further strengthen the cost competitiveness of the BWRX-300.”

GEH is currently working on a BWRX-300 design to reduce construction and operating costs below other nuclear power generation technologies.

The BWRX-300 is being developed to use a unique combination of existing fuel, plant simplifications, proven components and a design based on an already licensed reactor.

OPG’s Darlington New Nuclear Project site in Clarington, Ontario, is currently being prepared for BWRX-300, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2028

GEH said that it will be the first grid-scale SMR in North America.

TVA is preparing to seek a permit for a BWRX-300 at the Clinch River Site near Oak Ridge, Tennessee and is exploring additional sites, for potential deployments.

ORLEN Synthos Green Energy (OSGE), a joint venture between SGE and PKN Orlen, and others, have started the pre-licensing process in Poland.

The partners filed an application with Poland’s National Atomic Energy Agency for the assessment of the BWRX-300.

OSGE has already started the site selection process and is expected to deploy the first BWRX-300 unit by the end of this decade, with future potential for a fleet of BWRX-300s.

TVA president and CEO Jeff Lyash said: “TVA is leading the way for the nation by investing and helping to shape the standard design of the GEH BWRX-300, which will add more reliable, resilient, affordable and clean energy on the grid.”

OPG president and CEO Ken Hartwick said: “The collaboration agreement announced today will help advance necessary work to develop this next generation of nuclear power efficiently, benefiting electricity users in all our jurisdictions.”