Terrestrial Energy USA, the American branch of Oakville, Ontario’s Terrestrial Energy, has been invited by the US Department of Energy (DOE) to submit the second part of its application for a loan guarantee under Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, to support the licensing and construction of its Integrated Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR).
The USDOE Loan Guarantee Program was established to support the financing of projects located in the United States that employ innovative advanced energy technologies that avoid, reduce, or sequester anthropogenic emission of greenhouse gases.
The federal loan guarantee would see the U.S. government co-signing a loan of between $800 million and $1.2 billion to finance a project to license, construct and commission Terrestrial Energy’s first 195 MWe (electric megawatt) IMSR, likely to be located in the Idaho National Laboratory’s 900 square mile federally owned facility.
The INL is a centre for research relating to the integration of nuclear reactor systems into industrial heat applications and hybrid energy systems.
Terrestrial Energy is working to create small modular reactors, called Integral Molten Salt Reactors (IMSR), for use in small to modest energy markets, which the company says will be deployed “in the 2020s”, providing electricity generation both on and off-grid, as well as energy for industrial process heat generation.
Compared to the solid fuel used by conventional reactors, the liquid salt used in a Molten Salt Reactor functions both as heat producing fuel and coolant, meaning that the reactor can neither lose coolant nor melt down, greatly increasing reactor safety.
Earlier this month, announced that it had closed a Series A round of funding, bringing its total raised to C$22.5 million (US$17.2 million).
In March 2016, Terrestrial Energy received a C$5.7 million grant from the federal government’s Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) SD Tech Fund.
To clear the way for licensing advanced nuclear reactors like Terrestrial Energy’s IMSR in the United States, the U.S. Senate is likely to address the Nuclear Energy Innovation and Modernization Act (NEIMA) (S. 2795) in the coming weeks, which complements the Advanced Nuclear Technology Development Act (HR 4979), passed by the House on September 12.
As well as moving its IMSR project ahead in the United States, Terrestrial Energy is also engaging with the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission in a pre-licensing design review, paving the way for an license application here.
Earlier this week, Duke Energy, the largest electric power holding company in the United States, supplying and delivering energy to approximately 7.4 million U.S. customers, joined Terrestrial Energy’s Corporate Industrial Advisory Board.
Terrestrial Energy CEO Simon Irish will be speaking at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Sustainable Investment Forum 2016 on September 20 in New York, an event which the company is sponsoring.