ROCKVILLE, Md., May 14, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- X-energy has reached an agreement with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for the Institute's Nuclear Reactor Laboratory to use its research reactor to irradiate X-energy's TRISO-X fuel. The irradiation process will provide data in support of licensing X-energy's Xe-100 and other TRISO-based reactors.
"This research with MIT will provide confirmation of the performance and quality of our TRISO-X fuel," said X-energy CEO Clay Sell.
X-energy's reactors all use tri-structural isotropic (TRISO) particle fuel, a robust nuclear fuel particle first developed over 60 years ago. For over three years, X-energy has manufactured a proprietary version, TRISO-X, which seals uranium particles in a protective coating, eliminating the meltdown risk associated with traditional nuclear plants.
"This is an incredible milestone for the X-energy team as we will now have irradiation tested fuel for the first time," said Pete Pappano, PhD, Vice President of Fuel Production at X-energy. "The project's data will enable licensing for our Xe-100 reactor, the safest, most economic and most advanced design for a small modular nuclear reactor."
The irradiation is scheduled to occur later this year.
To date, X-energy is the only U.S. company actively producing TRISO fuel. The company is currently engaging with the Department of Energy to further develop and design its TRISO-X fuel.
Since 2009, X-energy has focused on designing state-of-the-art nuclear systems that have broad applicability – from large commercial plants to small, remote military applications, to nuclear thermal space propulsion concepts. X-energy has won United States Department of Energy, Department of Defense, and NASA contracts totaling more than $100M to develop nuclear fuels and build innovative nuclear reactor concepts.
X-energy is redefining nuclear energy. It manufactures fuel that seals uranium particles in a protective coating, which makes meltdown impossible and retains the waste inside forever. X-energy also designs plants that unlock the fuel's potential in a process that's as clean as wind or solar. When combined, the result is reliable carbon-free baseload power, produced more safely and affordably than ever before and available anywhere, at any time. For more information, visit https://x-energy.com/ or connect with us on Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram.