The Belgian nuclear energy research centre (SCK•CEN) has awarded a contract to Areva (Euronext: CEI), Ansaldo Nucleare and Agrupados to perform preliminary studies for the new multi-purpose hybrid research nuclear reactor for high-tech applications (MYRRHA).

The $32m contract covers estimation of the investment and operation cost for the reactor, evaluation of performance objectives, preparation for an operating license, as well as the definition of a detailed project schedule.

MYRRHA plant Belgium
Arvea, as the consortium lead, will provide technical coordination, manage the overall nuclear design, apart from conducting studies for the general installation, safety, and instrumentation and control.

Scheduled to enter full operation in 2024 to 2025 timeframe, the MYRRHA research reactor is expected to contribute to the development of transmutation as a technique for recycling and processing highly radioactive waste.

Belgian nuclear research centre has been working for several years on the design of a multi-purpose irradiation facility in order to replace the ageing BR2 reactor, a multi-functional materials testing reactor (MTR), in operation since 1962.

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