Economic Advantage

Competitive LCOE and capital cost affordability for smaller utilities

Economics improvement primarily driven by the following attributes:

Improved Efficiency

LFR’s high-temperature operation leads to a greatly improved (42-48%) thermodynamic efficiency relative to traditional nuclear technology (30-35%)

High-pressure Containment (“dome”) Eliminated

By virtue of liquid lead’s favorable properties (e.g., operation at atmospheric pressure, virtually no boiling concerns, lack of exothermic reactions), together with implementation of key design innovations (robust, microchannel-based heat exchangers), the amount of energy potentially releasable during any postulated accident involving contaminated release is significantly smaller than in a traditional nuclear plant and not in a pressure-releasing form. This allows for elimination of the high-pressure containment, which in traditional nuclear plants is a capital- and construction-intensive structure with many downstream layout impacts.

Reduced Components

Approximately 50% of systems eliminated or reduced. Additionally, elimination of thick forgings and reduction in scale of typical major components (reactor coolant pumps, primary heat exchangers, etc.) support capital cost reduction.

Safety I&C Eliminated

LFR’s inherent safety attributes together with elegant and robust design solutions allow elimination of most safety-grade I&C.

Piping Eliminated

Adoption of an integral configuration for the primary system, together with eliminated need for primary coolant replenishment, results in the elimination of Primary Piping & Safety-Injection Lines.

Shorter Construction

Plant design simplifications listed above, together with implementation of Westinghouse’s plant modularization approach based on technologies proven through the AP1000 projects, support reductions in construction schedule and thus financing costs.

LFR economic advantage