NuScale Power, LLC is pleased to announce it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Xcel Energy Inc. (Xcel Energy), a leading energy utility provider, to explore the feasibility of Xcel Energy serving as a plant operator at NuScale Plants.
NuScale is a leader in developing advanced small modular reactors that are considered the next generation of carbon-free nuclear plants. NuScale is seeking an experienced nuclear plant operator to provide potential customers with the operational support needed to generate carbon-free energy using advanced reactor technology.
Under the MOU, the two parties will examine the potential for Xcel Energy to become NuScale’s preferred partner to provide a suite of operational power plant services to NuScale customers based on Xcel Energy’s exceptional nuclear operational management systems. The MOU does not include a formal operating agreement, but it creates a framework for negotiating definitive agreements for Xcel Energy and NuScale to work together.
“As demand for carbon-free, reliable energy grows, NuScale continues to lead the pack as the most innovative, game-changing technology solution that can make a real difference for generations,” said NuScale Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John Hopkins. “This agreement underscores NuScale’s ability to provide our customers not just with technology but also with the world-class operational support needed to ensure that countries, governments, utilities, and customers can provide the clean energy solution our communities need to thrive.”
Xcel Energy, which has more than 50 years’ experience operating nuclear plants, is the owner and operator of two of the highest performing nuclear plants in the country, both located in Minnesota.
“As the first major energy provider to announce a 100% carbon-free vision, we understand the need for new technologies to meet the need for always on, carbon-free electricity,” said Pete Gardner, senior vice president and chief nuclear officer, Xcel Energy. “We’re excited to explore a potential partnership with NuScale that advances the next generation of nuclear energy, a technology that has the potential to provide the reliable, carbon-free electricity needed for a clean energy future.”
NuScale made history in August 2020 as the first and only SMR design to ever receive approval from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and in July 2021 the NRC published the proposed final rule certifying the NuScale Plant design. NuScale maintains strong momentum towards the commercialization of its SMR technology by the end of this decade. NuScale and Fluor are currently working for Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS) to bring the world’s first clean energy, carbon-free SMR project to commercialization.