Image credit: Cavendish Nuclear

Rolls-Royce and Cavendish Nuclear have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to explore opportunities to collaborate on the Rolls-Royce Small Modular Reactor programme.

The companies will develop the roles that Cavendish Nuclear can perform in the design, licensing, manufacturing and delivery aspects of Rolls-Royce’s factory-fabricated SMR plants, ultimately adding capabilities to strengthen and complement those already within the current supply chain partners.

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Dominic Kieran, Managing Director of Cavendish Nuclear, said: “We believe new nuclear build has a critical role to play in achieving the energy system decarbonisation required to address the challenge of climate change.

“We see the Rolls-Royce SMR programme as a really exciting opportunity for UK technology and the UK supply chain to make a major contribution to achieving net zero both in the UK and internationally.

The agreement was signed by Rolls-Royce in its role as consortium leader on the programme that has been working on the design of the power station for the last two years with support from the UK government through UK Research and Innovation.

The consortium includes; Assystem, Atkins, BAM Nuttall, Laing O’Rourke, National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), Rolls-Royce, Jacobs, The Welding Institute (TWI) and Nuclear AMRC.

Image credit: Cavendish

The Rolls-Royce SMR uses a different approach to delivering new nuclear power and takes advantage of factory-built modularisation techniques to drastically reduce the amount of on-site construction, delivering a low cost nuclear solution that is competitive with renewable alternatives, according to Cavendish.

Tom Samson, CEO of the Rolls-Royce SMR Consortium, said Cavendish Nuclear has “world class manufacturing and modularisation capabilities” as well as a “wider nuclear skill set delivering engineering and manufacturing solutions across the new build and decommissioning landscape”.

“We are excited at the prospect of bringing those skills and capabilities into our SMR programme and in doing so making a meaningful contribution to the UK’s levelling up agenda and our Global Britain ambitions with the export potential of our SMR offering.”