Modular fabrication planned for historic nuclear project
The small modular reactor project is the first of its kind for North America.
A rendering shows the small modular reactor, Canada’s first new reactor in 30 years. – Government of Canada
- Modular fabrication will be used to construct North America’s first grid-scale small modular reactor (SMR).
- Aecon has formed a teaming agreement with E.S. Fox to jointly fabricate steel components offsite at Aecon’s fabrication facility in Cambridge and E.S. Fox’s Port Robinson facility.
- The SMR will deliver 300 MW of electricity, which is enough to power 300,000 homes.
The Whole Story:
The companies plan to utilize modular fabrication to construct North America’s first grid-scale small modular reactor (SMR) through Ontario Power Generation’s (OPG’s) Darlington New Nuclear Project (DNNP).
Aecon is the provider of all construction services for the DNNP, including project management, construction planning and execution as part of an Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) partnership with OPG, GE Hitachi and SNC-Lavalin. E.S. Fox is currently completing early site preparation work at the DNNP location. Through the IPD partnership, Aecon has formed a teaming agreement with E.S. Fox to jointly fabricate steel components offsite at Aecon’s fabrication facility in Cambridge and E.S. Fox’s Port Robinson facility.
These components will be welded into sub-assemblies and shipped to the DNNP project site where they will be built into larger modules on-site and used to construct the primary steel structure of the reactor building. Leveraging a modular approach to help build the BWRX-300 SMR, a new class of nuclear reactor, will contribute to achieving reduced construction costs.
“This modular fabrication partnership is a made-in-Ontario solution, illustrating the strength of Ontario’s robust nuclear supply chain – a network that is critical to deploying the future of nuclear in Ontario and beyond,” said Thomas Clochard, executive vice president, nuclear and civil, Aecon. “Aecon is playing an important role in delivering the next generation of nuclear plants. We look forward to combining the collective capacity and expertise of Aecon and E.S. Fox to execute this important fabrication scope while working with our project partners to ensure the supply of clean, reliable and affordable electricity to support local communities and global net-zero goals.”
According to Aecon, the DNNP could create approximately 2,500 jobs.
“E.S. Fox is excited to work with Aecon on this important and initial scope for this first-of-a-kind project,” said Pat Cimek, vice president, construction and fabrication services, E.S. Fox. “With the experience of both companies, we look forward to building large sections of the structure at the two facilities leveraging a modular approach and shipping them to the DNNP project site – helping reduce field labour and equipment costs, improving the overall project schedule, and supporting high-paying skilled jobs in Niagara Region.”
The new SMR at Darlington will be Ontario’s first nuclear reactor build in a generation. It will deliver 300 MW of electricity, which is enough to power 300,000 homes. The province currently has 15 nuclear reactors in operation – and three reactors under refurbishment – at three sites, providing over 50 per cent of the province’s clean electricity.