A high-powered conference at the Manufacturing Technology Conference in Coventry explored the investment opportunities of small modular nuclear reactors – cutting-edge technology which could drastically reduce the costs of nuclear power.
More than 200 industry experts gathered to explore taking smaller nuclear reactors from concept to construction, as the Government announced next steps for a £32 million scheme to test new technologies and get them to market.
Experts from the nuclear, manufacturing, construction and finance sectors discussed the commercialisation of innovative small nuclear power stations, which could be built as early as 2030, providing clean, secure low-carbon power and opening up export opportunities.
Nuclear Energy Minister Richard Harrington has invited developers to submit design proposals to the nuclear regulators in the new year. He also set out how the £32 million advanced manufacturing and construction programme will allow companies to bid for funds to test new technologies and iron out potential flaws before moving to full production.
“Hosting this first ever conference, bringing together more than 200 influencers from across the industry demonstrates our commitment to enhancing our world-leading nuclear sector. Increasing competitiveness both nationally and regionally in the sector is part of our modern Industrial Strategy, and this summit could help UK industry seize the global challenge of taking this new generation of new nuclear power from concept to construction.”
The MTC was founded by the University of Birmingham, Loughborough University, the University of Nottingham and TWI Ltd. The MTC’s industrial members include some of the UK’s major global manufacturers.
The MTC aims to provide a competitive environment to bridge the gap between university-based research and the development of innovative manufacturing solutions, in line with the Government’s manufacturing strategy. The MTC is part the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, supported by Innovate UK.