As was previously announced, on June 10, 2010, Idaho National Laboratory approved a Texas A&M University-led joint proposal with Lightbridge for irradiation testing of this kind of metallic fuel in the Advanced Test Reactor. The fuel demonstration in a test reactor environment is a key stepping stone to demonstration and deployment of this fuel in commercial Western-type light water reactors.
Sam Vaidyanathan, a member of Lightbridge's Technical Advisory Board with more than 30 years of experience with the development, testing, and engineering of nuclear fuels, materials, and core components at major nuclear companies, added, "Simply stated this development is a very significant one for the nuclear power industry. For those of us who have been in this business for the last few decades, this development without a doubt is transformational. The tangible benefits are clear, measurable, and will likely have a substantive impact on the future of the nuclear power industry. We're very pleased and excited about this technological breakthrough."
Over the past decade, Lightbridge has completed significant development and testing relating to this all-metal fuel technology. In particular, Lightbridge has evaluated key operating parameters under various operating conditions. Some of the key parameters that were evaluated include: melting point, fission gas retention, surface heat flux, fuel swelling, moderator-to-fuel ratio, cladding corrosion, and others. The results of the evaluation performed to-date indicate that the fuel performance would meet applicable criteria for safe operation.
About Lightbridge CorporationLightbridge is a U.S. nuclear energy company based in McLean, VA. with operations in Abu Dhabi, Moscow and London. The Company develops non-proliferative nuclear fuel technology and provides comprehensive advisory services for established and emerging nuclear programs based on a philosophy of transparency, non-proliferation, safety and operational excellence. Lightbridge's breakthrough fuel technology is establishing new global standards for safe and clean nuclear power and leading the way towards a sustainable energy future. Lightbridge consultants provide integrated strategic advice and expertise across a range of disciplines including regulatory affairs, nuclear reactor procurement and deployment, reactor and fuel technology and international relations. It leverages those broad and integrated capabilities by offering their services to commercial entities and governments with a need to establish or expand nuclear industry capabilities and infrastructure.