Rolls Royce appoints SNC-Lavalin to continue UK nuclear projects

Atkins appointed by Rolls Royce to continue work on UK Small Modular Reactor nuclear programme.

Atkins (SNC-Lavalin) has been appointed by Rolls Royce SMR to continue work on the Small Modular Reactor nuclear programme in the UK.  

Building on its role as a phase one partner in the original UK SMR consortium, SNC-Lavalin will now provide Rolls-Royce SMR with engineering services and specialist support as it builds its business.

Rolls-Royce SMR is developing low-cost, low-carbon nuclear SMR plants that could play a significant role in domestic and international decarbonisation targets, with plans to have the first UK plant operational by the early 2030s. 

During the first phase of the programme, Atkins, a member of the SNC-Lavalin group, led the unique modular design of the SMR power station which will be critical to its success: approximately 90% of the manufacturing and assembly activities are carried out in factory conditions, significantly reducing cost and build time. 

As an approved supplier, SNC-Lavalin’s UK team will now offer civil, structural and architectural support along with safety and regulatory services, waste management, mechanical handling, mechanical and process engineering, project management, and digital services.

“SMRs will enable the deployment of dependable, low-carbon technology swiftly and cost-effectively – an attractive prospect to many countries aiming to decarbonise generation and meet net zero commitments,” said Ian L. Edwards, president and CEO, SNC-Lavalin.

“Clean, reliable nuclear power is an important pillar in a net zero energy system, from large nuclear plants to Small Modular Reactors,” said Sandy Taylor, president, nuclear, SNC-Lavalin. “Our continued work with Rolls-Royce SMR affords us the opportunity to share our nuclear expertise and play an integral role in applying the benefits of modularised solutions to critical energy infrastructure.”

Tom Samson, chief executive officer, Rolls-Royce SMR, said: ‘SNC-Lavalin’s ongoing support and contribution to the growing Rolls-Royce SMR business is incredibly important. As phase 1 partners they contributed to our development in important areas such as regulation and a breadth of engineering challenges. We look forward to working collaboratively as we target the deployment of Rolls-Royce SMRs and our shared decarbonisation objectives.”

Rolls-Royce SMR 470MW plants have the potential to support both on-grid electricity and off-grid solutions, including the decarbonisation of industrial processes and production of clean fuels. Small Modular Reactors are a key element of the UK’s net zero strategy and the programme has significant export potential. SNC-Lavalin’s continued involvement with the business builds on the group’s extensive contribution to the UK’s new generation of nuclear technology, from SMRs and large-scale new nuclear plants to its involvement in fusion energy research and development.

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