The principal technical mission of SMR-160 is “safety and security first.” Located deep underground, SMR-160’s robustly designed core is protected from cataclysmic environmental phenomena and malevolent human intervention. Designed to provide an unfailingly safe and economical source of clean energy from nuclear fission, SMR-160 incorporates passive features of its operation to ensure utmost safety and reliability. The safety and security characteristics of SMR-160 include the following:

  • The reactor core is located deep underground.
  • No reliance on on-site or off-site power to shut down the reactor and to reject the decay heat to the environment (hence, Inherently Safe).
  • Passively cooled for design basis shut down. The reactor coolant system continues to circulate by thermo-siphon action during accident scenarios
  • No active components (pumps) needed to run the reactor.
  • For maxium security, all vital NSSS components are located underground.
  • The containment is a steel structure that will serve to dissipate heat to the environment using passive cooling for a design basis event.
  • All safety-related systems are inside containment.
  • Large pipe break Loss Of Coolant Accident (LOCA) rendered non-credible by design: no large piping in the Reactor Coolant System (RCS) loop.
  • Fuel is protected by airplane crash resistant containment and by a missile shield over the spent fuel pool that is inside the containment.
  • The reactor system is designed to withstand the strongest Design Basis Earthquake postulated for any existing U.S. or international nuclear plant location.
  • Tall column of water above the reactor core providing large coolant inventory.