The Maryland Energy Administration announced a partnership to determine the potential for siting an Advanced Small Modular Reactor with Maryland-based X-energy and Frostburg State University through a collaborative study.
Depending on these findings, this research will provide information on available clean energy opportunities to the state.
A Maryland fossil fuel site will be examined for potential conversion for use of an SMR. This is only the first step in a robust feasibility process for siting considerations. During this stage an economic and business study will be conducted and FSU will generate an economic impact analysis.
The potential for Maryland to house a new SMR brings a variety of benefits including firm, carbon-free generation that includes a host of advanced safety features including passive cooling systems and a pebble bed reactor design. Broadly, the benefits to state energy generation and business are multiple.
The potential use of an SMR deployment to repurpose existing electricity generation assets and meet growing generating needs could reduce stranded asset costs, allow for well-paying jobs to remain in the region, provide business opportunities for the manufacturing and construction sector during the construction and maintenance phases, and provide for more flexible, lower-cost electricity to the state’s residential and business consumers.
“We are experiencing a transition in our energy systems and must look for new opportunities and impactful approaches to provide reliable 24/7 power generation within our rapidly changing energy landscape,” said Mary Beth Tung, director of MEA. “This is the right set of circumstances for Maryland to explore new ways to advance clean energy goals, while staying at the forefront of technological advancements. With this partnership in place, I am confident we will be able to determine whether or not the deployment of this advanced zero carbon energy in the state makes sense, and how best to proceed if a positive determination is made.”