POWER magazine’s website gets millions of pageviews every year. Looking over the stats from 2023, the following five articles were the most-viewed by our audience, which includes many power industry professionals. Were you among the hundreds of thousands of readers of these stories?
5. Westinghouse Secures First Customer for eVinci Nuclear Microreactor (Nov. 27, 2023)
Westinghouse’s first customer for its eVinci microreactor—a flagship 5-MWe/13-MWth “nuclear battery”—is poised to be the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC), Canada’s second-largest research and technology organization.
SRC—a Saskatchewan government Treasury Board Crown Corporation that serves as a commercial laboratory to provide research and development (R&D) for Saskatchewan industries—said it plans to pilot an eVinci microreactor by 2029. However, that timeframe will be subject to licensing and regulatory requirements. The location of the eVinci microreactor will be “determined as the project progresses,” the provincial government said.
To read the full article, visit: https://www.powermag.com/westinghouse-secures-first-customer-for-evinci-nuclear-microreactor/.
4. Fusion Energy Reaches Prime Time (May 1, 2023)
For close to a century, electricity generation from fusion remained the stuff of science fiction, little more than a plot point that served to separate the present from the future. All that came to a dramatic end over the past three years, as a cascading series of scientific, technical, business, and political developments yanked fusion out of the labs and onto the front pages.
Several years ago, POWER published a detailed article on fusion (see “Fusion Energy Is Coming, and Maybe Sooner than You Think” in the June 2020 issue), which was well-received by our audience. Since then, there have been many incremental advances, which reached a critical mass in 2021 as the financial and political establishments finally began seeing fusion energy as a worthy investment—not for the distant future but as something that could be achieved within the next decade.
The article published in May 2023 provided an update to the 2020 piece, including details on key events since the original article’s release. No single development was considered fully responsible for the dramatic shift in attention toward fusion, but all of the items touched on in the update have contributed.
To read the full article, visit: https://www.powermag.com/fusion-energy-reaches-prime-time/.
3. U.S. Air Force Selects Fast Microreactor for Nuclear Power Pilot (Aug. 31, 2023)
The U.S. Air Force’s first nuclear microreactor planned for Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska under a federal nuclear microreactor pilot program will be an Oklo liquid metal-cooled fast reactor.
The Defense of Logistics Agency (DLA), acting on behalf of the Department of Air Force (DAF), issued a Notice of Intent to Award (NOITA) that selects the Santa Clara, California–based nuclear technology firm’s Aurora Powerhouse for its Eielson Air Force Base pilot and initiates an acquisition process to potentially award Oklo a 30-year, firm-fixed-price contract to pilot the advanced nuclear energy technology.
However, in September 2023, the Air Force issued a Notice of Rescission “to give further consideration to the agency’s responsibilities” under the governmental acquisition rules. Oklo CEO Jacob DeWitte recently told POWER that the action doesn’t constitute an outright “rescission of the contract because there’s no contract yet.” Part of the Notice of Intent award “is to kick off contract negotiations, and part of that process often involves things where the Notice of Intent, because of federal acquisition rules and requirements, are withdrawn and updated,” he said.
To read the full article, visit: https://www.powermag.com/u-s-air-force-selects-fast-microreactor-for-nuclear-power-pilot/.
2. TVA Head Wants Nothing to Do with Building One Reactor Unless He Can Build 20 (May 17, 2023)
Building a nuclear power plant is a difficult job. It takes years of planning and sometimes more than a decade to complete. The risk of schedule delays is great, especially on first-of-a-kind projects, and the financial implications of such setbacks can ruin a company.
Yet, the Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA’s) president and CEO, Jeff Lyash, suggested the risk is worth taking, that is, if lessons learned from one project can be parlayed into success in future projects. That’s why TVA is studying the addition of a small modular reactor (SMR) at its Clinch River site. Lyash envisions using that first unit as a template to eventually make Clinch River a four-unit site, and then replicating that design in at least four other locations within TVA’s service territory.
“I’ve said very vocally, I [want] nothing to do with building one reactor, unless I can build 20—and 20 is the low estimate—and so, this is what Clinch River is about,” Lyash said as a guest on The POWER Podcast.
To read the full article, visit: https://www.powermag.com/tva-head-wants-nothing-to-do-with-building-one-reactor-unless-he-can-build-20/.
1. America’s Most Powerful Nuclear Reactor Makes a Landmark Revival (Nov. 1, 2023)
Entergy’s Grand Gulf 1, located in Port Gibson, Mississippi, is the largest single-unit nuclear power plant in the U.S. It has thrived for four decades by cultivating a culture of continuous improvement, achieving record-breaking performance milestones, and empowering its workforce. But the power plant is, in many respects, a vastly different installation than when it first came online in 1985.
The nuclear plant recently revived its value as a regional powerhouse through a renewed effort by visionary leadership focused on a commitment to excellence. Grand Gulf’s remarkable performance was recognized by POWER with a Top Plant award in 2023.
To read the full article, visit: https://www.powermag.com/americas-most-powerful-nuclear-reactor-makes-a-landmark-revival/.