Newcleo is involved in developing reactors, which can substantially reduce existing volumes of radioactive waste and plutonium apart from removing the need for further mining of uranium

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Enel signs agreement with newcleo to cooperate on Generation IV nuclear technology. (Credit: Carlo Dani/Wikimedia Commons)

Italian energy firm Enel Group and UK-based newcleo will join forces to work on the latter’s Generation IV nuclear technology projects.

The partnership intends to offer a safe and reliable power source in addition to considerably lowering existing volumes of radioactive waste to be used as fuel for reactors.

As per the cooperation agreement signed by the parties, Enel will work together with newcleo on projects pertaining to advanced nuclear technology. The Italian energy firm will offer specialised expertise by sharing several of its qualified personnel.

For the support offered, newcleo has agreed to securing an option for Enel to become the first investor in its first nuclear power plant, which it will construct outside Italy.

Enel CEO Francesco Starace said: “Innovation is crucial to the development of technologies that can secure clean, reliable, affordable energy that is as independent as possible from geopolitical factors. For this reason, we continue to explore any area of the energy spectrum.

“This collaboration with newcleo is the latest example of our tireless search for the best companies to join us on our journey towards a clean future and we look forward to supporting newcleo in its challenging but promising roadmap to provide zero-emission electricity in a safe, affordable and sustainable way.”

Currently, Enel has a nuclear capacity of more than 3.3GW in Spain in addition to a stake of nearly 33% in Slovakia-based Slovenské elektrárne. Recently, the Slovak firm connected the first of two turbine generators of the Mochovce nuclear power plant unit 3 to the grid.

Newcleo is engaged in developing reactors, which can substantially reduce existing volumes of radioactive waste and plutonium apart from removing the need for further mining of uranium for the long-term benefit of communities as well as the environment.

The company is set to design and build the Mini 30MW lead fast reactor (LFR), which will be set up in France by 2030. This will be followed by a 200MW commercial unit that is expected to be deployed in the UK.

Newcleo CEO Stefano Buono said: “I am delighted that Enel has chosen to partner with newcleo. They are showing great foresight in being one of the first energy companies to appreciate and support our sustainable strategy and its impact on our collective future.

“Newcleo’s fast reactor technology is the necessary step in the nuclear industry to enable multiple recycling of already extracted uranium and a massive reduction in nuclear waste. In addition, the use of lead opens the possibility to safer and cheaper reactor operating.”