The Offshore Floating Nuclear Plant Concept
Author(s)Buongiorno, Jacopo; Jurewicz, Jacob M.; Golay, Michael W; Todreas, Neil E
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A new offshore floating nuclear plant (OFNP) concept with high potential for attractive economics and an unprecedented level of safety is presented. OFNP creatively combines state-of-the-art light water reactors and floating platforms similar to those used in offshore oil/gas operations. A reliable and cost-effective global supply chain exists for both technologies; therefore, robust expansion in the use of nuclear energy becomes possible on a timescale consistent with combating climate change in the near future. OFNP is a plant that can be entirely built within a floating platform in a shipyard; transferred to the site, where it is anchored within 12 nautical miles (22 km) off the coast in relatively deep water (≥100 m); and connected to the grid via submarine transmission cables. OFNP eliminates earthquakes and tsunamis as accident precursors; its ocean-based passive safety systems eliminate the loss of ultimate heat sink accident by design. The OFNP crews operate in monthly or semimonthly shifts with onboard living quarters, like on oil/gas platforms. OFNP is a reactor for the global market: It can be constructed in one country and exported internationally; it lends itself to a flexible and mobile electricity generation approach, which minimizes the need for indigenous nuclear infrastructure in the host country; and it does not commit the customer to a 40- to 60-year-long project.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering
American Nuclear Society
Buongiorno, J. et al. “The Offshore Floating Nuclear Plant Concept.” Nuclear Technology 194.1 (2016): n. pag.
Author's final manuscript