GE Hitachi BWRX-300 is the reference reactor for the Fermi Energy technology selection.
We gave it an Estonian but also an international name Linda.
Tenth generation of boiling water reactors
The BWRX-300 is a 10th generation boiling water reactor developed by GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy. The technologies used in it have proven to be reliable in previous generations of reactors, and newer solutions have been licensed by the US Nuclear Safety Authority NRC. It is a small modular reactor with an electrical capacity of 300 megawatts, which uses water cooling with natural circulation (pumps are not necessary to ensure the safety of the reactor). Passive safety systems have been used to keep the reactor safe without human intervention.
The construction of the first reactor of its kind will be carried out by the energy company Ontario Power Generation 2024-2025 in Canada and will be put into commercial use in 2027-2028. in.
Smaller – The BWRX-300 station fits on a land area of 170 x 280 meters. The grid connection switchyard, cooling tower, office, parking lot, warehouse and other necessary auxiliary buildings are within the boundaries of this area. The emergency planning zone is estimated to be about 8 hectares.
Cheaper – compared to a conventional nuclear power plant, the BWRX-300 plant uses 90% less concrete. The construction volume of the BWRX-300 is also 50% smaller per produced electricity (MW). The simplicity of the design and the proven performance of previous generations of boiling water reactors make the BWRX-300 60% cheaper than other small reactors. The estimated cost of one reactor is 1 billion euros.
Safer - passive safety systems reduce the risk of accidents, caused by the loss of cooling water. Reactor steam condensation and cooling systems based on nature laws, ensure the safety of the reactor without human intervention, even in the most severe case of an unlikely accident, for at least a week. After which it is sufficient to add cooling water using a conventional water pump or fire truck pump. It is also sufficient to use one of the four water reservoirs to cool the reactor.
In Estonia 2031-2035 - Ontario Power Generation, an energy company based in Canada, begins construction of the first reactor of its kind in 2024-2024 and it will enter commercial use in 2027-2028. During this construction, it is possible to monitor and evaluate the process and make preparations for construction in Estonia.
Main parts of the station
Main technical parameters
|Reactor type||BWR – boiling water reactor|
|Electric power output||300 MWe|
|Thermal power output||870 MWth|
|Designed lifespan||60 years (extendable)|
|Ability to regulate power||50-100% daily, 0.5% per minute|
|Fuel cycle||12-24 months|
|Fuel enrichment (average)||3,4%|
|Emergency fuel||Not needed|
|Estimated probability of nuclear damage||Less than 10‑7 per reactor year|
|Construction time (for 1 + n reactor)||26 months|
|Construction cost (for 1 + n reactor), estimated||1 billion euros for the plant's first reactor, construction cost will lower with next reactors|
|Cost of electricity generation, estimated||50-60 €/MWh|
Can be done also in Estonia
Established efficient supply chain
The reactor and its main components (steam separator, steam dryer, control rods and their actuators) as well as the isolated condensation system are used in many reactors. Experienced manufacturers exist in the USA, Canada, Japan, Mexico and Europe (GE Power's turbine factories in France and generator factories in Poland). The supply chain does not have to be built from scratch.
The steam turbine and generator are off-the-shelf technologies produced by GE on a large scale. For example the TOPAIR generator has been manufactured, shipped and synchronized by GE in 3,570 units worldwide. Fermi Energia, in cooperation with Estonian mechanical engineering and manufacturing companies (Estanc, Estonian Heavy Indistries, Scanweld, BLRT, Maru, Aquaphor, Kunda Nordic Cement, etc.), is convinced that almost 30% of the components can be produced and delivered from Estonia.
Both in the USA and in Europe (Switzerland, Spain, Finland, Sweden, Germany) there are several energy companies with long-term safe and economical experience dealing with boiling water reactors. There is a group of BWR owners and a Japanese BWR Operator Training Center. Technology is familiar to national regulators and many technical support organizations. GE Hitachi has performed maintenance and replacement for dozens of reactors. The long-term operation of reactors (aging management) for 40-50 years is well known.