With worldwide demand for electrical power expected to double over the next 25 years, the world faces the daunting challenge of providing affordable electricity to an expanding population without exacerbating climate change or fostering nuclear proliferation. Advanced Reactor Concepts, L.L.C. (ARC) will address this challenge. ARC is developing an exportable, factory-produced, 100 MWe nuclear reactor with fixed fuel costs for 20+ years.
The ARC-100 design creates a "walk away" passive safety system that insures the reactor will never melt down even in a disaster that causes a complete loss of power to the plant site. In addition, it can be fueled with the nuclear waste produced by traditional reactors, and its 20 year refueling cycle offers new levels of proliferation resistance. It provides a new model for nuclear power that is based on factory fabrication of modular components that can be shipped for rapid site assembly, thereby promoting the prompt start of a revenue stream.
The reactor's basic technology was proven through the successful 30 year operation of the EBR-II prototype (described below). ARC has made significant proprietary advances to the original EBR-II design in order to create the ARC-100.
Sodium Fast Reactor Basics
A Simple, Inherently Safe Design, Operating at Atmospheric Pressure, Yields Lower Plant Cost
Sodium as Coolant
The use of sodium instead of water as the heat transfer agent in the reactor allows the reactor to operate at ambient pressure. Its containment vessel is a double walled stainless steel tank rather than a 12 inch thick forged steel containment vessel required for traditional light water reactors.
Re-Use of Nuclear Waste
The ARC-100 can be used to recycle traditional nuclear waste and generate energy, burn or transform plutonium that could be used for weapons and eliminate the need to bury or store large quantities of nuclear waste.
Small enough that its modularized components can be shipped and installed at the site using regular commercial equipment, such as barges, rail, trucks, and construction cranes.
Effectively "walk away" fail safe and protection of the reactor from a melt down does not depend on extra pumps, operator intervention or any external system in the event a disaster destroys all electric power to the plant site.
Twenty Year Refueling Cycle
The proprietary reactor core of the ARC reactor is designed to operate for 20+ years without refueling.