We are pleased to announce that Holtec concluded a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Škoda Praha and Hyundai Engineering and Construction (HDEC) on October 11th to advance the planning for construction of SMR-160s in the Czech Republic.  Under the Agreement, the parties will develop the division of responsibilities for procurement, construction, and commissioning of SMR-160 plants in Czech Republic in accordance with Czech Codes and Standards and inclusion of Czech content in the delivery of the projects. The Parties will also develop a cost estimate for deployment of the SMR-160 standard design in the Czech Republic.  

This Agreement is pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement (MOU) signed between Holtec and the Czech nuclear operator ČEZ last month. Holtec has been working with ČEZ since 2019, supporting their technical and commercial evaluation of SMR-160 for deployment in Czech Republic and a feasibility study performed under an MOU and technical exchange with ÚJV Řež. The MOU with ČEZ was signed last month to enable continued exchange between the parties for evaluation of SMR-160 deployment at Temelin, where ČEZ plans to deploy a pilot SMR as early as 2032. ČEZ is also evaluating future deployment of SMRs to replace several coal power plants planned for shutdown in the late-2030’s. Deployment of 24/7 clean nuclear power at these sites is important to ensure stability of the Czech electricity grid. 

On a wider front, Holtec has been engaged in a formal technical exchange on SMR-160 with the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic looking at broader applications for SMRs, such as district heating and industrial processes. Holtec has been engaged with electricity intensive consumers in the industrial and transportation sectors in the Czech Republic as future end-users of electricity and process heat produced by SMR-160 plants. Holtec’s European Program Manager Rafael Marin noted, “SMR-160 modules are an ideal fit in terms of thermal and electrical power production for district heating and industrial applications. We can build as many SMR-160 modules as needed to meet the demands of the site, including traditional grid-scale electricity applications with 4-8 units deployed at a single location. In addition, SMR-160 is based on PWR technology and uses same fuel assembly type and enrichment levels that are in operation in PWRs plants currently, making SMR-160 licensing friendly.”

Holtec and Korea’s HDEC signed an agreement last November for completion of the standard design of the SMR-160 plant and delivery of SMR-160 projects worldwide (HH 36.15). HDEC brings an exquisite record of performance to Team Holtec having performed the construction of 18 nuclear plants in South Korea and the construction of four APR-1400 units in the United Arab Emirates, Barakah Units 1-4, delivered on budget and on schedule. HDEC has an annual revenue of over 16 BB USD. ŠKODA PRAHA is a Czech EPC contractor of power plants on turnkey basis. ŠKODA PRAHA has deep relevant experience by virtue of their work at the Temelin and Dukovany Nuclear Power plants, in addition to the Bohunice V2 Nuclear Power Plant in Slovakia.

Holtec’s Senior Vice President of International Projects, Dr. Rick Springman, commented, “The importance of this Agreement should not be understated – it is the starting point for planning project execution of SMR-160 within the Czech and broader European context, supported by three companies with a reputation of delivering real projects in the nuclear sector. Holtec has over 36 years of experience delivering nuclear equipment, HDEC brings 50 years of continuous nuclear power plant construction experience, and ŠKODA PRAHA brings experience executing EPC projects with understanding of the European labor and services market, along with specific knowledge of the Temelin site – I am not aware of any other SMR companies’ teams that can match this project delivery capability.” 

Holtec senior representatives have also noted that building a replica of Holtec’s planned U.S. SMR Gigafactory in Czech Republic is on the table, depending on the size of commitment for SMR-160 orders in the Czech Republic and competing offers from other European countries that have expressed interest in hosting a Holtec SMR Gigafactory. Holtec’s plans for the U.S. Gigafactory were announced earlier this year (HH 37.11).