IAEA International Symposium on the Deployment of Floating Nuclear Power Stations – Benefits and Challenges

The IAEA Symposium on Floating Nuclear Power Plants: Benefits and Challenges, took place at the IAEA, Vienna, 14 - 15 November 2023, where legal experts, nuclear and maritime regulators, and industry leaders joined in discussions on what role FNPP’s could play in the fight against climate change and the transition for Net Zero.

Opening the meeting, IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi said that in many countries “there is active consideration of floating nuclear power plants”. However, as part of discussions about their viability and potential applications, the Director General said that safeguards and the international and regulatory implications needed to be thoroughly analysed.

During the Symposium, discussions focused on current and future designs of FNPPs and their uses, including, for example, as a floating offshore installation for production of clean hydrogen to be converted into green ammonia for use in agriculture or as a low carbon shipping fuel. Participants also examined the specific challenges that the movability of FNPPs pose for their licensing, regulation, transportation and application of safeguards. Nuclear safety and security were discussed, including the extent to which the current standards and practices can, or cannot, be applied to FNPPs. The symposium’s concluding session identified the next possible steps to enable the deployment of floating nuclear power plants, including the establishment of a mechanism to improve communication between the nuclear and maritime industry on one hand, and regulators on the other, with focus on application of security and safeguards by design*.

The following WNTI members participated:

Matthew Palmer – Lloyds Register

Jez Sims – Lloyds Register

Peter Wallace – Lloyds Register

Mikal Boe – Core Power

* Taken from an IAEA news item. The full text can be viewed here: Floating Nuclear Power Plants: Benefits and Challenges discussed at IAEA Symposium | IAEA

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