Before 2030, will it be announced that the fueling of the UAMPS small modular nuclear reactor project at the Idaho National Laboratory has begun?
The Carbon Free Power Project (CFPP) is the US's first small modular nuclear reactor (SMR) construction project, funded in part by the US Department of Energy and located at the DOE's Idaho National Laboratory in Idaho Falls, Idaho. Commercial operation of the power plant is slated to begin in 2029, with the first module coming online that year. The CFPP will provide energy for Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS), a political subdivision of the State of Utah that provides wholesale electricity to public power systems in six western states.
UAMPS began site characterization in 2020 for the CFPP, completing it in February 2022. As of the August 2022 update, the project continues moving forward on schedule and within its budget. Also in August 2022, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission approved the reactor's design, making it the first and only SMR design to have received completed NRC certification.
However, historically the nuclear power industry has experienced decades of increasing cost overruns and project delays. See for example this MIT study published in 2020: Sources of Cost Overrun in Nuclear Power Plant Construction Call for a New Approach to Engineering Design
This question concerns fueling of the reactor. A pivotal step after completion of a nuclear reactor's construction is the loading of fuel. Once that step has taken place, the reactor can start producing electricity.
Before 2030, will it be announced that the fueling of a CFPP small modular nuclear reactor at the Idaho National Laboratory has begun?
Resolution source is the CFPP project update page at https://www.uamps.com/Carbon-Free (Please scroll down to the section entitled Clean Energy News for project updates, which are typically posted monthly.)
Resolves as Yes upon an update being posted announcing that an initial fuel load has been delivered to at least one of the reactor modules before January 1, 2030. Else resolves as No.
Per the Metaculus FAQ, if the resolution source is judged by Metaculus Admins to be defunct, obsolete, or inadequate, then they will make a best effort to replace it with a functional equivalent. Admins have sole discretion in cases of any disputes and are the final determiners of this question's resolution.
|Number of forecasts||30|
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