CHARLOTTE, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Babcock & Wilcox Company (B&W) (NYSE: BWC) is pleased to announce that the production-standard control room prototype for its B&W mPower™ small modular reactor (SMR) is now operational. This engineering simulator is a key milestone in the B&W mPower development program.
“Having the ability to train operators two to three years ahead of commercial operation will keep us on the critical path toward timely development and operation at our Clinch River project by 2021.”
The B&W mPower control room prototype, located in Lynchburg, Va., is built to the same production specifications as that which will control the two reactors in an actual B&W mPower SMR control room. The control room is connected to a plant engineering simulator to allow validation of the man-machine interfaces and operating controls architecture. Initially, the control room will help the B&W mPower design team to effectively incorporate lessons learned from real world operating experience, and discover any design issues early in the development cycle, reducing B&W mPower development risk and cost. As the B&W mPower program moves closer to deployment, the control room will be used to train future reactor operators.
“Completing the control room prototype at this stage of B&W mPower development program allows us to begin an intensive testing and development of the training program well in advance of deployment,” said Christofer Mowry, President, Babcock & Wilcox mPower, Inc. “Having the ability to train operators two to three years ahead of commercial operation will keep us on the critical path toward timely development and operation at our Clinch River project by 2021.”
The facility will be used by about two dozen engineers, creating new jobs starting next year. Using their experience operating existing reactors, these engineers will refine B&W mPower plant system design and the reactors response to a variety of anticipated and postulate events.
The B&W mPower control room design is intended to optimize licensed reactor operator staffing levels by utilizing state-of-art, human-focused design principles to reduce the potential for errors. The control room prototype is located at B&W’s Lynchburg facility, the primary reactor and component design and testing location for the mPower America team.
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., The Babcock & Wilcox Company is a leader in clean energy technology and services, primarily for the nuclear, fossil and renewable power markets, as well as a premier advanced technology and mission critical defense contractor. B&W has locations worldwide and employs approximately 12,700 people, in addition to approximately 10,400 joint venture employees. Learn more at www.babcock.com.
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward Looking Statements
B&W cautions that this release contains forward-looking statements, including statements relating to the anticipated use of and benefits from the control room and the timeframes expressed regarding the control room and B&W mPower development. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties, including, among other things, our inability to fund research and development efforts for B&W mPower or adverse changes in the competitiveness of nuclear power. If one or more of these or other risks materialize, actual results may vary materially from those expressed in this release. For a more complete discussion of these and other risk factors, please see B&W’s annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011 and subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. B&W cautions not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release, and undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, except to the extent required by applicable law.