In a key development, the U.S. Infrastructure Bill has been passed into law. The "Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act" provides almost $2.5 Billion dollars through Fiscal year 2025 for the Department of Energy's contribution to the Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program, which selected X-energy and Terrapower to demonstrate their advanced nuclear reactors before the end of the decade.
Each company will split the cost of demonstration reactor with the DOE.
"This is a massive endorsement from the federal government of X-energy's first commercial deployment in Washington State and the opportunity for advanced nuclear energy in creating jobs as well as rebuilding U.S. infrastructure," said Clay Sell, X-energy CEO. "We are very appreciative of the continued strong bipartisan support from Congress and the President."
In March 2021, X-energy signed the Department of Energy's Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program (ARDP) Cooperative Agreement. This officially marked the beginning of the company's participation in ARDP and partnership with the DOE.
This project enables X-energy to build the world's first commercial scale advanced nuclear reactor in Washington State through a partnership with Energy Northwest, said the company.
Advanced nuclear energy is increasingly being considered as a vital carbon-free base-load power source that will allow the US and the world to achieve global carbon reductions by the middle of this century. ARDP is designed to spur domestic private industry to demonstrate advanced reactors in the United States and the global export market.
"The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act sends a strong message that the U.S. will support the Advanced Reactor Demonstrations to their full and successful completion." said Darren Gale, X-energy Vice President and ARDP Program Manager. "This support ensures the success of our reactor and fuel technology at commercial scale".
"X-energy's high temperature gas reactor (HTGR) is a game-changer for nuclear energy. It enables flexible siting, lowers the cost of building nuclear plants, and is powered by TRISO-X, which the Department of Energy has called the "the most robust fuel on Earth." The Xe-100 reactor does not need to be located near water and could be a great alternative for areas that are retiring coal plants by providing clean energy and jobs to local communities," states X-energy.
In addition to clean, around-the-clock carbon-free electricity, the steam from the Xe-100 can be used in applications including clean hydrogen production, desalination, and other energy-intensive industrial processes, adds the firm.