SMR Development in Finland
What is SMR?
SMR, Small Modular Reactor, is a modular nuclear reactor with an electrical output of less than 300 megawatts. Small nuclear reactors are a solution of producing emission-free energy, i.e. electricity or heat, or both. Small modular reactors (SMR) can be the key to achieving Finland’s carbon neutrality goals.
Small modular reactors are an emerging market for existing nuclear power industry operators as well as companies that offer or need carbon-neutral solutions. Small reactors can offer an alternative to fossil fuels in district heating and industrial applications. Finnish companies, as producers of technology and services, have their place in the supply chains of thermal solutions and in the integration of SMR solutions. Finnish actors already have know-how that can be applied to SMR projects.
When on the market?
It has been estimated that the first district heating small reactors could be in commercial use as early as 2030. In the report prepared by LUT University for the Government Council, on the possibilities of small modular nuclear reactors in Finland, it turns out that it would be possible to implement these small nuclear reactors in Finland in the production of electricity and heat. However, according to the report, the development of the nuclear energy laws and the licensing and control practices of the nuclear industry is needed in order to bring the best benefits for operational safety and economy into practice.
EcoSMR, a public project funded by Business Finland and implemented by VTT and LUT University, supports Finnish industry by creating an international innovation and business ecosystem. At the center of the ecosystem are the needs of customers and the possibilities of Finnish technological know-how in the global energy market. The project studies technologies, licensing and business and supports their development to meet the needs of the market.
It is estimated that the first small reactors intended for the production of district heat could be in commercial use as early as 2030.