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Centre working on small nuclear reactors technology to boost clean energy

IANS | December 06, 2023 01:04 PM

NEW DELHI: The central government on Wednesday said it is working on new technologies such as Small Nuclear Reactors to fulfill its commitment to a clean energy transition.

Small capacity atomic power plants, popularly called Small Modular Reactors (SMRs), with their unique features of modularity, scalability, small footprint and improved safety present themselves as an attractive option for repurposing of retiring coal-based thermal power station sites, Minister of State for Atomic Energy and Space Dr Jitendra Singh said in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday.

Deploying Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) across the country, especially in locations not suitable for large nuclear plants, can produce a large amount of low-carbon electricity. In order to move away from fossil fuel consumption, SMRs can be installed and operated for repurposing the aging fossil fuel-based power plants, he explained.

However, SMRs are not expected to serve as replacement to conventional large-sized nuclear power plants, which serve as base load plants.

Nuclear power plants are installed and operated in line with stringent regulatory requirements to contain radiation and to avoid exposure to the public in all circumstances. The techno-commercial aspects of SMRs are still in initial stages even globally and its large-scale deployment depends on various factors, including regulatory harmonization globally by International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), especially considering emergency planning zones and public acceptance., the statement added.

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