For the generation IV reactors sustainability becomes a predominant concern, which means preservation of natural resources, waste minimization and proliferation resistance are criteria as important as economy and safety.
For generation IV, sustainability becomes a predominant concern, which means preservation of natural resources, waste minimization and proliferation resistance are criteria as important as economy and safety. Furthermore, other applications of nuclear energy than electricity production are to considered, in particular, hydrogen production, industrial use of heat or desalination.
The development of new systems will take time and require validation and demonstration. Therefore, the target for industrial scale applications is 2030 or later.
An interesting point is an internationally shared R&D through 2 projects, GIF Gen IV International Forum and INPRO.
In GIF, six innovative concepts with technological breakthroughs are under study: Sodium Fast Reactor with closed fuel cycle, Lead Fast Reactors with closed fuel cycle, Gas Fast Reactor with closed fuel cycle, Very High Temperature Reactor with once through cycle, Supercritical Water Reactor with once through/closed fuel cycle, Molten Salt Reactor with closed fuel.
INPRO is a project to help ensure that nuclear energy is available to contribute in fulfilling energy needs in the 21st century in a sustainable manner and to bring together both technology holders and technology users to consider jointly the actions required to achieve desired innovations in nuclear reactors and fuel cycles. INPRO time horizon is 50 years into the future.
At a US and IAEA initiative, an International Partnership is seeked for a fuel services for countries without fuel cycle facilities to ensure security of fuel supply.