IAEA Issued Recommendation on How to Apply Design Safety Standards to SMRs

IAEA released the first publication in the series dedicated to small modular reactors (SMRs).The publication “Applicability of Design Safety Requirements to Small Modular Reactor Technologies Intended for Near Term Deployment” contains main peculiarities of SMR designs in comparison to stationary reactors and evaluates availability to apply safety requirements from the standpoint of technology.

The publication “identifies directions for further development of additional requirements or guidance. Furthermore, it provides a relevant test case and work methodology for similar studies to be conducted in the near future,” said Aurelian Tanase, Technical Specialist at Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.

The document is the result of discussions and contributions from representatives of regulatory bodies, technical and scientific organizations, operating organizations and SMR designers and is part of the IAEA’s initiative to provide guidance to licensing authorities based on international consensus and best practices.“

“Taking into account the SMR licensing processes that are being implemented in several countries, the IAEA facilitated discussions about the applicability of the specific safety requirements for the design of nuclear power plants to two SMR technologies intended for near term deployment: light water reactors (LW-SMRs) and high-temperature gas-cooled reactors (HTG-SMRs),” said Palmiro Villalibre, the IAEA Nuclear Safety Officer responsible for the publication.

It comes from the document, that most of the 82 design safety requirements can be applied to SMRs, although the publication suggests changes or specific interpretation of eight requirements for light water reactors and 30 for high-temperature gas-cooled reactors.

IAEA Office of Public Information and Communication.