UK serves key role in saving EU from energy crisis says expert
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The U battery is described as an advanced modular reactor, that is capable of providing low-carbon, cost-effective, locally embedded and reliable energy.
This reactor is much smaller than traditional nuclear reactors, providing just a fraction of the heat.
However, its creators believe that its smaller size will make it an ideal choice for industrial processes in the UK, being far cheaper and incredibly fast to build.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Timothy Abram, the Chief Engineer at U-Battery said: “In its current design, the U battery is essentially a very small reactor.
“The numbers might not mean much, but it provides 10 megawatts of thermal power.
“If you compare that, for example, with a Sizewell B, which is our most recent reactor, that generates 3,411 megawatts.
“In very rough numbers, we use energy for three things. about roughly a third of our energy for electricity generation, third for transport, and a third for heating, that’s domestic and industrial process heating.”
Mr Abram noted that the issue with conventional nuclear energy is that it only tackles the electricity-generation aspect.
He said: “One of the biggest things that the U battery can do is change that paradigm.
“That 10 megawatts that the U battery produces, essentially all of it can be used in industrial processes.
“It’s not much in terms of the total energy usage in the UK, it is broadly synonymous with perhaps a single user.
“It might be that the big users would require two to four U batteries on their sites.
“Because of how small we are, that’s actually quite doable- you can fit two or three units inside the penalty area of a football pitch.”
According to Mr Abram, these kinds of reactors will be a lot more affordable and safer than conventional reactors.
Steve Threlfall, the General Manager at U-Battery said: ”Another advantage is that it’s very quick to build.
“A large nuclear reactor might take eight or nine years to build, we say that we can build this in under two years.”
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“It’s also incredibly simple in terms of the number of modules there are, so the construction risks become very minimal as well.”
The team noted that such technologies is going to be most beneficial in mining industries, foundational UK sectors like steel and chemicals, along with remote communities like small islands.
The team also said: “U-Battery is committed to enabling and growing the UK nuclear sector and the wider industry and believes that its technology represents an opportunity to export UK expertise and equipment to international markets in the long term.”
This innovative new project is supported by an award made by the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), under the Advanced Manufacturing and Materials programme.
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