SN Nuclearelectrica SA and the FALCON Consortium develops the 4th generation Falcon reactor, ALFRED

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By Emea Riga
On October 03, 2019, SNN and the FALCON Consortium (Ansaldo Nucleare, ENEA and ICN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (« MoU ») regarding the cooperation for the development of the 4th Generation reactor, ALFRED
The goal of this MoU is to set a cooperation framework between the two parties regarding the pre-project works and the research and development activities which are to be implemented in order to develop the ALFRED project.
SNN and the FALCON Consortium agreed on: the exchange of information and data regarding the technology of fast-neutron reactors, by using molten lead as a cooling agent, the coordination of the research activities, the in-kind contribution depending on the expertise and capabilities of each party, the studies and analyses independently conducted by each party for their optimization, and the planning of the necessary framework for preparing the demonstrative activities.
“In an international environment in which the environment policies and measures significantly reconfigure the energy industry, and the solution comes from a well-thought mixture of sources with low CO2 emissions, the development of nuclear technologies in order to constantly improve security, savings and flexibility has become a necessity. Globally, there are few states that develop nuclear technologies, Romania being one of them, and the ALFRED project is considered on an international level a promising state-of-the-art technology. It is a complex project, with many benefits related to technology, security and savings, which we wish to commercially operate in as many states as possible after the completion of the project. The cooperation for the development of this project is essential, and this MoU is proof of the responsibility and involvement of the Romanian nuclear industry, overall, in the development of the nuclear program, and in providing innovative solutions on international level. In 2018, on a global level, nuclear energy provided 2563 TWh. If conventional fuel had been used instead of the nuclear energy of 2563 TWh, 2701 million tons of CO2 would have been generated. The role of nuclear energy and technological developments is obvious” – Cosmin Ghita, Chief Executive Officer of SNN.
“The ALFRED project represents the contribution of Romania to the development of the 4th Generation reactors, an innovative project on international level, and a long-term necessity for ensuring the contribution of nuclear energy to a clean and stable energy mix. The ALFRED project benefits from the support of the European Union by European Sustainable Nuclear Energy Energy Industrial Initiative («ESNII»), and on national level it represents a growth factor in innovation, ensuring security, technological development, and it has an important economic and social impact, especially for the South Muntenia region. Nuclear energy is a definite solution in reaching and maintaining the decarbonization targets. For RATEN ICN the development of the new 4th Generation nuclear technologies is an immediate priority. The effort is integrated in attempting to place Romania on the very short list of innovative states and in order to have long and very long term solutions”-Constantin Paunoiu, Manager of RATEN ICN.
The Romanian state is the main shareholder of Nuclearelectrica, through the Ministry of Energy, with 82.49% of the share capital, followed by Fondul Proprietatea, with 7.05% and other shareholders – 10.45%.
Component of SNN, Cernavoda CNE branch ensures the safe operation of Nuclear Units 1 and 2, each with an installed production capacity of 700 MW. The two reactors from Cernavoda provide about 20% of Romania’s energy needs.

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