The Aurora powerhouse is an advanced fission power plant that produces approximately 1.5MW of electric power


Oklo representatives with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission staff and the Nuclear Reactor Regulation management team. (Credit: Oklo Inc)

California-based company Oklo has submitted its first combined license application (COLA) to the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for the Aurora powerhouse in US.

Launched in December last year, the Aurora powerhouse is an advanced fission power plant that produces approximately 1.5MW of electric power.

The facility uses metal fuel to produce heat that is an advanced fuel type which is well demonstrated with decades of experimental data.

The firm claims to be the first company to submit a combined license application to NRC using a completely new structure.

The application is marked as the first application for an advanced reactor and a first privately funded application for a commercial advanced reactor.

Oklo chief operating officer and co-founder Caroline Cochran said: “We are excited to show that an application for a fundamentally different fission technology can meet and exceed existing regulations while not being impeded by guidance based on nuclear plants of decades ago.”

Oklo started the pre-application Aurora fission power plant in 2016

Oklo has also initiated a modernized and novel application structure for the advanced fission technologies.

In 2016, the firm has started the pre-application for the Aurora advanced fission power plant with the NRC and piloted the new application structure in 2018.

According to Oklo, NRC took many steps over the past several years to assure the effective and efficient review of applications for non-LWR technologies

Oklo Licensing director Alex Renner said: “This license application is a significant step towards deploying advanced fission energy and starting the clean energy revolution for the sake of humanity and the environment.”

Recently, the firm has secured access to recovered material from used nuclear fuel from Idaho National Laboratory.