Local MP Observes Cutting-Edge Nuclear Research at New Moltex Lab

Moltex Energy this week welcomed Charlotte Nichols, Member of Parliament for Warrington North, to its new Birchwood facility, to witness the technology developments underway in her constituency, which have the potential to solve climate change.

The brand new, bespoke laboratory is designed to allow hands-on experimental work in the crucial areas of corrosion, fuel and coolant chemistry, thermal hydraulics and other aspects of the research and development that supports Moltex’s reactor design.

It is already staffed with a team of twelve physicists, chemists, thermo-hydraulicists, metallurgists and mechanical engineers, with more on the way.

Moltex’s laboratory research will further validate the company’s Stable Salt Reactor (SSR) design, which is simpler and safer than conventional reactors, offering the possibility of faster deployment at a lower cost.

During the visit, Moltex was delighted to introduce Ms Nichols to its fast-growing team of scientists and engineers conducting research at the forefront of reactor design. The visit also included a tour of the laboratory and a live demonstration of some of the experiments and tests that are in progress.

The SSR is a high-temperature, molten salt reactor. There are two SSR variants, distinguished by fuel type: one uses low-enriched uranium, and the other uses recycled nuclear waste. The latter is being developed for locations with existing reactor operations and spent fuel stockpiles.

Both variants can produce grid-scale power and high-temperature heat, which can support the production of clean, low-cost hydrogen, which in turn can be used to create low-carbon fuels for decarbonising transport and industry.

The reactors can also produce dispatchable electricity, enabling them to back-stop intermittent renewables as a direct alternative to gas.

Ms Nichols said that she was delighted to see first-hand the fantastic research and innovation occurring in her constituency.

“The team at Moltex is focused on bringing forward technology that can fight climate change and help us reach our Net Zero goals,” Ms Nichols said.

“It was wonderful to see the next generation of scientists, engineers and technicians forging their careers in Warrington. I was particularly excited to visit the laboratory only a few weeks after Moltex was recognised as one of 39 ways to save the planet by the BBC.”

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