Terrestrial Energy and Orano Sign Comprehensive Agreement for Nuclear Fuel Supply for IMSR Power Plant
Bethesda, Maryland, and Oakville, Ontario – September 29, 2021 – Terrestrial Energy has entered into an agreement with Orano, a global leader in the nuclear fuel cycle, as part of its fuel supply program for operation of the Integral Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR®), a Generation IV “next-generation” nuclear power plant.
The agreement’s broad scope of services includes uranium enrichment, chemical conversion to IMSR® fuel form, its production, transportation, packaging, and logistics. This scope covers analysis for full-scale commercial production and supply of IMSR® fuel and applies to major markets for IMSR® power plant deployment today, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan.
This agreement is part of Terrestrial Energy’s multiple-sourcing strategy for IMSR® fuel supply and reflects Orano’s intention to support next-generation reactor commercialisation with its broad range of fuel services. The relationship between the companies is non-exclusive and allows both parties to pursue other similar business opportunities in the nuclear industry.
For more than 50 years, the Orano Group has provided nuclear fuel products and expert services across the entire nuclear fuel cycle to the global nuclear industry. These services include uranium enrichment as well as fuel conversion, production, packaging, and transportation. The security of commercial fuel supply over life-of-plant is backed by Orano’s modern, world-leading conversion and enrichment facilities performing at the highest standards of safety, quality and security while achieving a reduced environmental footprint.
“This agreement with Terrestrial Energy applies the global fuel supply scope and experience of Orano to focus on powering the next generation of innovative, clean-air nuclear energy in Canada,” said Amir Vexler, President and CEO of Orano USA. “Our North America team is proud to play an integral role in making this connection and fulfilling the agreement.”
“Utility requirements for fuel supply extend beyond enrichment of uranium to a range of essential services that together provide secure supply of reactor fuel to power plant gate,” said Simon Irish, CEO of Terrestrial Energy. “The scope of our agreement covers that full range from enrichment, production, with its transport elements, including packaging and logistics, for comprehensive commercial supply. This range of services is essential for first IMSR® power plant operations as early as 2028.”
IMSR® fuel uses standard assay low enriched uranium (LEU), which has become the commercial fuel standard over many decades of power plant operation. With the exception of CANDU plants (which use unenriched uranium), commercial nuclear power plants around the world today use standard assay LEU.
Terrestrial Energy introduced on September 14 its new IMSR®400 power plant, which consists of twin reactors and generators to produce 390 MW of clean electricity at one site. The IMSR®400 is one of three Small Modular Reactor (SMR) power plant designs under consideration for deployment at Ontario Power Generation’s Darlington Nuclear Generating Station. It is one of two Generation IV technology candidates, and the only Canadian technology candidate. Terrestrial Energy’s Oakville operation represents the largest SMR power plant technology development project in Canada.