The Role of Small Modular Reactorsin Decarbonizing the Energy Industry

By 2050, global energy consumption will grow by nearly 50%1. As countries seek to implement clean and innovative solutions, the increased use of renewable sources coupled with nuclear energy has the potential to meet additional demand and displace existing fossil fuels.

To decarbonize the power industry, energy leaders are bringing small modular reactors (SMRs) to life that will play a bigger role in the energy mix. Thanks to the use of passive safety systems and smaller fuel inventories, SMRs also reduces the risk of human error and interventions in the case of accidents.

However, licensing and certification challenges remain. To address these complexities and scale up affordable and configurable nuclear energy, companies are turning to digitalization to gain information reliability and traceability.


Digitalize to Decarbonize

Bring small modular reactors to life while delivering low-carbon nuclear energy.
Download our ebook for more insights.

Digitalize for Safety and Efficiency

If nuclear is to continue to play an important role in powering the world, companies must instill confidence in citizens that their operations are safe. This is where digitalization comes in.

Streamline licensing processes

Nuclear regulations are different across countries, which not only affects the safety demonstration of the power plant, but also the technical safety measures. Standardization through a unified platform is the key to navigating licensing practices.

Simplify the safety case

By using a single platform to demonstrate the safety of the power plant, companies can produce a detailed safety case for licensing reviews while reducing extensive time and resources.

Strengthen safety demonstrations

Through a model-based approach, stakeholders can ensure full traceability of all changes during the virtual review of the safety case by regulators.

Harmonize Three Pillars of SMRs

In addition, digitalization harmonizes the three pillars that form the core of SMR power plants: Modularization, productization and standardization.

Small Modular Reactors > Conceptual Design Planning > Dassault Systèmes


Through off-site fabrication of components, modularity offers the ability to make SMR plants configurable and more affordable. However, this needs to be planned from as early as the conceptual design phase. By using a unified platform, companies can collaborate with module manufacturers to develop the plant architecture according to the requirements, thus shortening construction time, costs and waste.

Small Modular Reactors > Simulate Multi-Configurational Designs > Dassault Systèmes


SMRs bring the promise of plant-as-a-product, designed and manufactured with standard product lines, and operated and maintained as a fleet. With digitalization, all stakeholders can move towards model-based systems engineering (MBSE) to simulate and validate product designs in multiple configurations. By leveraging the virtual twin of the plant, companies can make informed decisions and fast track the licensing process.

Small Modular Reactors > End-to-End Process Optimization > Dassault Systèmes


Standardization aims to ensure safe, reliable, and sustainable SMRs at an affordable cost. Through a single platform, companies can develop SMRs as a fleet to reduce costs while taking into account site specificities and optimizing their processes through multi-physics simulation. These processes can include assembly, commissioning, operations, maintenance and dismantling.

Digitalize for Clean Energy

As more countries move away from fossil fuels, nuclear energy continues to gain traction as a flexible, dispatchable energy source. Small modular reactors are a viable solution to produce decarbonized and cost-effective electricity to compensate for the intermittent nature of renewable sources such as wind and solar.

SMRs including microreactors will play an important role in ensuring the security of the world’s energy supply as well as its transition to net zero. It’s time to unpack the challenges and opportunities in nuclear and move towards a low-carbon future.

Explore our Solutions

1 Source: US EIA (Oct 2021)

Related Content

Energy Use

How to move to a next-generation energy landscape to reduce your energy use footprint.

Generate Clean Energy Profitably With Sustainable Wind Turbines

Win the clean energy race by minimizing the carbon footprint of wind turbines with virtual twin technology.

Our Sustainability Commitment

Dassault Systèmes provides business and people with 3DEXPERIENCE universes to imagine sustainable innovations capable of harmonizing product, nature and life.

Frequently Asked Questions About Small Modular Reactor Technology