In a bid to shift away from fossil fuel dependence by the next decade, Canadian power utility SaskPower recently announced that it had selected GE Hitachi (GEH) Nuclear Energy’s BWRX-300 small modular reactor for deployment in Saskatchewan by the middle of the 2030s.
At the end of June, the Saskatchewan Industrial and Mining Suppliers Association signed a memorandum of understanding with GEH’s Ontario-based subsidiary GEH SMR Technologies Canada Ltd, about the development of the BWRX-300 for use in Saskatchewan. The agreement likewise called for working with local suppliers to maximize the role of Saskatchewan’s supply chain in the North American nuclear power sector.
The BWRX-300 was selected following a stringent assessment focused on equipment safety, technology readiness, the maximum amount of power it can generate, fuel type, and expected cost of power generated.
Indeed, the selection of this specific small modular reactor is the result of a comprehensive process that included collaboration with Ontario Power Generation and a detailed review by Calian, an independent engineering and technical assessment firm that has worked extensively with the Canadian nuclear power sector.
In a statement released last June 27th, SaskPower interim president and CEO Troy King declared that this upcoming working partnership between the utility and GEH has long-term benefits for the people of Saskatchewan. King added that replacing existing reactor technology with GEH’s newer and more compact reactor is part of SaskPower’s commitment to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions.
Furthermore, the new technology will enable the company to provide sustainable power to its customers in a safe and reliable manner.
On the Road to Sustainable Power
For their part, the GEH team appreciates that SaskPower has selected its product for cleaner and more sustainable power generation.
According to GEH president and CEO, the inclusion of the BWRX-300 in the Canadian power utility’s arsenal of generation solutions is expected to help it meet its goals in terms of both climate change and energy security within a reasonable timeframe.
Wileman added that the BWRX-300 stands at the forefront of the small modular reactor sector thanks to GEH’s long-standing expertise in design and licensing, its technological prowess, and its high position in the fuel supply chain.
For his part, Saskatchewan power minister Don Morgan feels that this event is a critical milestone in the province’s push towards clean and sustainable energy. It is also a step in the right direction in advancing the development of zero-emission nuclear reactor technology.