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2 minute read - 22nd May 2024

Rolls-Royce SMR setting up Sheffield development facility

Rolls-Royce SMR will manufacture and test prototype modules for its small modular reactors (SMRs) at a new facility being set up at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC).

Housed within the AMRC’s flagship Factory 2050 building in Sheffield, the Rolls-Royce SMR module development facility will produce working prototypes of the individual modules that will be assembled into Rolls-Royce SMR power plants.

The first phase is worth £2.7m and will be part of a wider £15m+ package of work that will further de-risk and underpin the Rolls-Royce SMR programme. The modular approach is unique within the nuclear industry but is widely used and well proven across the oil and gas and renewables sectors.

The Rolls-Royce SMR programme is the UK’s first home-grown nuclear technology for over a generation and today’s announcement is another step towards deploying a fleet of factory-built nuclear power plants in the UK and around the globe.

Rolls-Royce SMR is setting up a multi-million pound facility at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre in Sheffield / Picture: AMRC/Rolls-Royce

Victoria Scott, Rolls-Royce SMR’s chief manufacturing engineer, said: “Our investment in setting up this facility and building prototype modules is another significant milestone for our business. Our factories will produce hundreds of prefabricated and pre-tested modules ready for assembly on site. This facility will allow us to refine our production, testing and digital approach to manufacturing – helping de-risk our programme and ensure we increase our delivery certainty.”

Claire Coutinho, secretary of state for energy security and net zero, added: “Small Modular Reactors are the future of nuclear technology, and key to quadrupling the UK’s nuclear capacity by 2050 as part of the biggest expansion in 70 years. This multi-million pound SMR manufacturing facility will be fantastic for Sheffield – making the Steel City once again the home to world-leading industry.”

Rolls-Royce SMR offers a radically different approach to delivering new nuclear power based on proven technology. Each of the factory-built nuclear power stations will provide enough low-carbon electricity to power a million homes for more than 60 years.

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