15 July 2021
Oklo Inc has announced a 20-year commercial partnership with Compass Mining, the world’s first online marketplace for bitcoin mining hardware and hosting. Oklo’s “advanced fission powerhouses” will provide clean, reliable and affordable baseload power for Compass’ Bitcoin mining machines, starting in the early 2020s.
Oklo, which is the first advanced fission company to have its licence to construct and operate a power plant be accepted for review by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), says it is committed to supplying at least 150 megwatts of power to Compass in the first phase of this partnership, “helping drive the sustainability” of Bitcoin mining practices.
“Cryptocurrency mining offers promising pathways to accelerate the deployment of clean energy technologies, and Oklo is positioned to respond to commercial demands by offering end-users the convenience of buying clean, reliable and cost-effective power that they can depend on,” Jacob DeWitte, co-founder and CEO of Oklo, said.
Oklo says its technology can produce reliable power for up to 20 years without the need to refuel and have the capabilities to turn nuclear waste into clean energy, adding that this commercial project is scalable, and Oklo can add additional capacity to accelerate Compass’ sustainable mining efforts further while driving the economics of Bitcoin mining activities powered by advanced fission.
“Every bitcoin miner understands the need for cheap, reliable power,” said Whit Gibbs, co-founder and CEO of Compass, adding that the partnership with Oklo will “redefine the energy landscape for cryptocurrency mining”.
California-based Oklo has received a Site Use Permit from the US Department of Energy, demonstrated a prototype of its metallic fuel, was awarded fuel material from Idaho National Laboratory (INL), and developed the first advanced fission combined licence application, which completed acceptance review and was docketed by the NRC.
Oklo’s proposed Aurora reactor design is a fast neutron reactor that uses heat pipes to transport heat from the reactor core to a supercritical carbon dioxide power conversion system to generate electricity. Using metallic high-assay low-enriched uranium (HALEU) fuel, the Aurora ‘powerhouse’ produces about 1.5 MW of electric power, and can also produce usable heat. INL last year agreed to provide Oklo with access to HALEU fuel recovered from a now-decommissioned experimental reactor for use in the development and demonstration of Aurora.
Researched and written by World Nuclear News