Generation IV nuclear reactors are innovative nuclear reactors expected to facilitate nuclear power to meet the energy needs of society in the future. In addition to meeting the energy need, this generation of reactors is designed to fulfill the concept of sustainable development.
The concept of Generation IV nuclear reactors was developed by the Generation IV International Forum, originally consisting of 9 countries. Over 100 experts evaluated around 130 reactor concepts, until just 6 were decided upon and determined as the Generation IV reactors. These reactors are planned to be deployed sometime in the 2030s.
Generation IV international forum is an international co-operation framework recognized for the improvement of Generation IV systems. The concept of Generation IV reactors was launched in the United States in 2000 and the forum was established in 2001. The members of Gen IV forum consist of twelve countries and the EU, with detail in Figure 1 above.
In designing and pursuing the reactors of the future, GIF has centered their goals around four broad areas:
The 6 reactors determined by GIF to be the reactors of the future have clear advantages and technological advancements compared to reactors in use today, along with meeting the goals listed above. Most of the 6 systems employ a closed fuel cycle, meaning there will be less waste produced and more reused fuel. Their temperatures will be considerably higher than those in current use, allowing for higher efficiency of heat transfer and improved fuel use. The reactors can be explored in detail on their respective pages, and are as follows: