Small Modular Reactors – Innovation and Safety

The IAEA safety standards serve as a global reference for protecting people and the environment from the harmful effects of ionizing radiation.

Although they can generally be applied to small modular reactors (SMRs), experts from the SMR Regulators’ Forum are working on a tailor-made solution to help national authorities regulate this new class of nuclear power reactors.

Innovative SMRs can play a crucial role in increasing access to electricity and powering economies while minimizing greenhouse gas emissions, which are central goals of many governments.

This new generation of nuclear power reactors, with an output of no more than 300 MW(e) per unit, offers the possibility of flexible supply, including in combination with renewables, while being deployable either as a single or multi-module plant.

However, new approaches to their design and deployment pose challenges to the existing regulatory framework.

Read more details on the new recommendations in this interview with Karine Herviou, Director at the Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN, France) and member of the SMR Regulators’ Forum.