Terrestrial Energy, L3Harris to develop simulator for IMSR

30 September 2020

L3Harris Technologies is to develop an engineering and operator training simulator for Terrestrial Energy's Integral Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR) under a newly announced contract. The simulator will support engineering activities and, subsequently, operator training as development of IMSR moves to licensing and construction prior to plant commissioning, Terrestrial said.

The simulator will support engineering activities and operator training (Image: Terrestrial Energy)

The simulator is being built by L3Harris in Montreal, Quebec and will be delivered to Terrestrial Energy's Oakville, Ontario facility in 2021. It will provide a high-fidelity platform to simulate and visualise all major IMSR reactor and power plant functions.

Terrestrial Energy CEO Simon Irish said L3Harris' simulator provides an "extraordinary real-world experience" of IMSR power plant operation and performance. "This digital technology illustrates how high-performance computing enables Generation IV innovation capable of providing cost-competitive, reliable, resilient and clean electric power and industrial heat," he said.

L3Harris will also provide its Orchid simulation environment and training to Terrestrial Energy for further simulator development, under L3Harris' Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITB) commitments to Canada through its participation in the National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSS). The ITB commitment requires that new opportunities that benefit Canadian industry must be identified when any work is performed outside of Canada on the NSS. This ensures that the entire value of significant Canadian defence contracts is spent in the country.

Molten salt reactors use fuel dissolved in a molten fluoride or chloride salt, which functions as both the fuel (producing the heat) and the coolant (transporting the heat away, and ultimately to, the electricity generating equipment). Terrestrial's IMSR builds on 50 years of experience at the USA's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and integrates the primary reactor components, including the graphite moderator, into a sealed and replaceable reactor core unit with an operating lifetime of seven years.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News