Skip to Content

DOE to release VTR study in December

VTR Rendering INL
Idaho National Laboratory
Rendering of Versatile Test Reactor

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK)-The U.S. Department of Energy announced Thursday it plans to publish a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Versatile Test Reactor (VTR) in mid-December.

VTR is described as a leading-edge, fast-spectrum test reactor that will support research and development of innovative nuclear technologies.

The DEIS looks at the potential environmental impacts of operating the VTR at either the Idaho National Laboratory or Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. The Associated Press reported Thursday that INL will be listed as its preferred alternative.

DOE said it would make a final decision on the design, technology, and location for the VTR following completion of the EIS and Record of Decision, which is expected in late 2021.

The DEIS also looks at fabricating fuel to power VTR at either INL or Savannah River.

“The Versatile Test Reactor continues to be a high-priority project for DOE to ensure nuclear energy plays a role in our country’s energy portfolio,” said Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette. “Examination of the environmental impacts reflects DOE’s commitment to clean energy sources and will serve as an example for others looking to deploy advanced reactor technologies.”

DOE established the VTR program in 2018 in response to industry requests calling for a reactor-based fast neutron source to be in place by the mid-2020's. A team of experts from national labs, universities and industry have been developing a design, cost estimates, and a schedule for VTR.

“The VTR team has done a great job of meeting the expedited schedule that Congress set for the project,” said Dr. Rita Baranwal, Assistant Secretary for DOE’s Office of Nuclear Energy. “The team has developed a strong conceptual design that will help fill this long-standing gap in our country’s research infrastructure, and will support decades of energy innovation.”

Article Topic Follows: Local News

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo

News Team


KIFI Local News 8 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content