Economic and Technical Aspects of Nuclear Energy Competitiveness in the Current U.S. Restructured Electricity Markets

The objective of this project is to investigate a wide range of technology, policy and market factors with the goal to identify those options that have the greatest potential to restore the economic competitiveness of nuclear power in the mid- to long-term. To do so, we have formed a team that brings together experts with in-depth nuclear technology domain knowledge (residing in the Nuclear Engineering Division) and experts in power grid and market modeling and simulation (residing in the Energy Systems Division [ES]). We are leveraging and expanding on existing electricity grid and market models developed by ES to fully understand the market dynamics, as well as technical and regulatory constrains that affect the competitiveness of nuclear energy within both deregulated and regulated electricity markets. We are extending and enhancing these models to allow us to investigate in detail the full range of operational and planning decisions that affect the economic performance of nuclear power. For example, we are simulating the effect of incentive schemes for renewable energy such as the production tax credit, which gives incentive for renewable generators to submit negative bids to the market. We are also investigating the potential revenue streams for nuclear generators from participating in new or existing markets for operating reserves, and the system benefits of having a more flexible fleet of nuclear power plants that can provide load following and operating reserves, subject to their technical constraints.

June 13, 2017 at 10:00 am in Bldg. 203 Auditorium

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