This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

April 28, 2004

Nine Companies Plan to License Advanced Nuclear Plant Design

The dormant U.S. nuclear power industry may have a resurgence using improved designs if nine companies succeed in their goals. Seven leading energy companies and two nuclear reactor vendors plan to work with DOE to obtain a "Combined Construction and Operating License" for advanced nuclear power reactors, and applied on April 26th for DOE funding. The companies plan to prepare detailed designs and applications for two advanced reactor designs, then choose one for submittal to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). After NRC approval, any individual company or group of companies could decide to use the license to build a new nuclear plant.

The two reactor vendors—Westinghouse Electric Corporation and GE Energy—would pay the largest share of industry costs for the licensing project, about $400 million. If approved, that amount would be matched by DOE research and development funds, averaging about $57 million a year for seven years. See the March 31st and April 26th press releases on the Entergy Corporation Web site.