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NIRAB Annual Report 2022

The third iteration of the Nuclear Innovation and Research Advisory Board (NIRAB) was convened in autumn 2021 comprising of experts from industry, academia, and independent consultants with diverse backgrounds. Since then NIRAB has been developing and evolving and delivering a programme of work. This report provides an overview of the work of NIRAB over the year to October 2022.

Development of the work programme identified three key areas of work: Technology, Delivery, and Use Case. The focus of the NIRAB Technology Working Group (NTWG) is to advise on research and development needs for new nuclear, with a focus on (Advanced Modular Reactors) AMRs. The Delivery Working Group (NDWG) has a focus on innovations in delivery methodology needed to bring forward AMRs, and in particular High Temperature Gas Reactors (HTGRs) to build a demonstrator by early 2030’s. The Use Case Working Group (NUCWG) has a focus on the potential end user requirements and market for AMRs and their role in
decarbonising hard to reach sectors such as, transport and industry to supply to a heat and hydrogen economy, and thus supporting the achievement of Net Zero by 2050.
Over the past 12 months NIRAB has developed and provided several written outputs:
• NIRAB Early Advice to BEIS to support the Advanced Modular Reactor Research, Development and Demonstration Programme (AMR RD&D), March 2022.
• NIRAB Advice to Regulators on Scope of AMR RD&D programme, July 2022.
• NIRAB paper on Review of Nuclear New Build Approval Processes, September 2022.
• Response to House of Lords Inquiry on People and Skills, September 2022.
• NIRAB response to House of Commons Science and Technology Committee Inquiry on Nuclear Power, September 2022.
• NIRAB Overview of Impact of Nuclear Innovation Programme (2016-2022), October 2022.
NIRAB has also engaged with senior officials in BEIS on their advice, with regular attendance
at NIRAB plenary meetings from officials and Chief Scientific Advisor Professor Paul Monks.
NIRAB continues to develop its work programme to support the AMR RD&D programme as
part of a roadmap to support delivery of a HTGR demonstrator.