Rolls-Royce and Cavendish Nuclear sign delivery and manufacturing partnership agreement for SMR programme

Rolls-Royce and Cavendish Nuclear have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to explore opportunities to deepen the relationship between the parties through cooperation on the Rolls-Royce SMR programme.

Under this agreement Rolls-Royce and Cavendish Nuclear commit to working together to develop the roles that Cavendish Nuclear can perform in the design, licensing, manufacturing and delivery aspects of the Rolls-Royce factory-fabricated small modular nuclear power plant.

Among the opportunities to explore will be Cavendish Nuclear’s capabilities in engineering design; validation and verification; and the provision of manufacturing facilities and capability for aspects of the SMR plant manufacture.  This will involve exercising the broad set of technical and manufacturing capabilities and facilities that UK-owned Cavendish Nuclear has within its portfolio.

The agreement has been signed by Rolls-Royce in its role as consortium leader on the program that has been working on the design of the power station for the last two years with support from the UK Government through UK Research and Innovation. The consortium already includes many well-established UK nuclear industry brands including Assystem, Atkins, BAM Nuttall, Laing O’Rourke, National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), Rolls-Royce, Jacobs, The Welding Institute (TWI) and Nuclear AMRC.

The MoU with Cavendish Nuclear brings additional capabilities to the UK SMR program and adds world class manufacturing and design capabilities to strengthen and complement those already within the current supply chain partners.  

The Rolls-Royce SMR, a single unit of which can power one million* homes, is a radically different approach to delivering new nuclear power and takes advantage of factory built modularisation techniques to drastically reduce the amount of on-site construction and can deliver a low cost nuclear solution that is competitive with renewable alternatives. 

The Rolls-Royce SMR will provide long term, guaranteed, low carbon power to support both on-grid electricity as well as a range of off-grid clean energy solutions to support the decarbonisation of industry and the production of clean fuels to support the energy transition in the wider heat and transportation sectors. 

Tom Samson, CEO of the Rolls-Royce SMR Consortium, said: “Our SMR program has been designed to deliver clean affordable energy for all and does so with a revolutionary new approach aimed at commoditising the delivery of nuclear power through a factory build modularisation program.  

“Cavendish Nuclear, and its parent Babcock International Group, have unique capabilities within the UK industry with their world class manufacturing and modularisation capabilities at their facilities at Rosyth as well as their wider nuclear skill set delivering engineering and manufacturing solutions across the new build and decommissioning landscape.  

“We are excited at the prospect of bringing those skills and capabilities into our SMR program and in doing so making a meaningful contribution to the UK’s levelling up agenda and our Global Britain ambitions with the export potential of our SMR offering.”

Dominic Kieran, Managing Director of Cavendish Nuclear said, “We believe new nuclear build has a critical role to play in achieving the energy system decarbonisation required to address the challenge of climate change. 

“We see the Rolls-Royce SMR programme as a really exciting opportunity for UK technology and the UK supply chain to make a major contribution to achieving net zero both in the UK and internationally. 

“We believe our capabilities in nuclear project development and delivery, and our manufacturing and modularisation facilities, are an excellent potential fit for the Rolls-Royce SMR, and we are looking forward to working with Rolls-Royce to develop how we can help take the project forward.”

Signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between Rolls-Royce and Cavendish Nuclear

Two Rolls-Royce SMR power stations deployed on one site