Monday, October 21, 2013


America’s nuclear industry isn’t healthy. Thanks to the rise of cheap shale energy, four nuclear plants have closed so far this year. Older reactors can’t compete with today’s energy market conditions, but a new generation of nuclear technology promises to breathe new life into the industry. NuScale Power has plans to shrink containment vessels down to just two-fifths the height and an eighth of the diameter of industry standards. It’s a move that reflects a potential sea change in nuclear power: smaller, cheaper, less powerful reactors that would compose a more distributed (and therefore more robust) energy network.