Tri-Cities group studies small nuclear reactor

KENNEWICK, Wash. (AP) - A Tri-Cities group is studying the possible benefits of building a small modular nuclear reactor system at the Hanford nuclear reservation.

The Tri-City Herald says the state Legislature last year set aside $500,000 to study the manufacturing and advancement of small modular reactors in the Tri-Cities to meet future demand for low-carbon power.

The money will be used to pay for Tri-City Development Council's study and then a proposal to the Department of Energy, if the study shows benefits of building at Hanford.

Small modular reactors are about one-third the size of current nuclear power plants and could produce 45 to 300 megawatts of power. These reactors could be built in factories, transported to sites where they would be installed, and be grouped together.