Sodium Cooled Fast Reactor
The Sodium cooled fast reactor (SFR) is the most developed Gen IV reactor in the fast neutron spectrum, with a total of 390 years of reactor operating time across fifty years in eight countries.
Low-pressure liquid sodium is used to cool the core, and a very wide variety of fuel can be used, including waste from other nuclear reactors. The SFR uses a closed fuel cycle, where all the waste products are converted into more useful fuel or inert products, which eliminates the problem of nuclear waste.
The reactor outlet temperature is 500-550°C which enables electricity generation in secondary sodium circuit. The SFR was estimated to be deployable in 2015 and will primarily be used for electricity production and actinide management.
The SFR system offers the potential to operate with a high conversion fast spectrum core, with the resulting benefit of increasing the utilization of fuel resources and minimisation of waste. The envisaged SFR capability to efficiently and nearly completely consume its waste products fuel would reduce the high-level radioactive waste it produces. Such reductions would bring benefits in the radioactive waste disposal requirements associated with the system as well as in terms of reducing proliferation concerns.