Newcleo, Viaro Energy Look to Nuclear Technology for Oil and Gas Decarbonization

Viaro Energy's oil rig on the North Sea and a boat

(Credit: Viaro Energy)

by | Mar 6, 2024

This article is included in these additional categories:

Newcleo and Viaro Energy have formed a strategic partnership between the two companies, aiming to use nuclear technology to help decarbonize Viaro’s oil and gas infrastructure.

The partnership will begin with feasibility studies of Newcleo’s lead-cooled fast reactor (LFR) technology, which is able to use spent nuclear fuel from existing plants to generate energy through nuclear fission. The company claims that its process allows for a reduced climate footprint for its own operations, increases the usable energy from previously used uranium, and reduces the amount of long-lived wastes overall. Further, the technology does not rely on mixed oxide fuel, meaning it has a reduced need for mining and waste management.

Once feasibility studies are successfully completed, the 200-megawatt LFR reactors will be deployed at various sites within Vario’s portfolio, where they will be used to cogenerate energy, for heat and power generation, and for off-grid applications. The LFR may therefore help decarbonize Viaro’s hydrocarbon assets and will reportedly last for 60 years. Once the work with Viaro is complete, Newcleo’s LFRs may be used to generate clean energy for the United Kingdom’s electric grid or other areas of Europe.

Viaro has also announced its direct investment in Newcleo by acquiring shares in the company’s last capital raise.

Cogeneration Expands Potential for Nuclear Energy Applications

While nuclear energy is a widely recognized clean energy source, it is mainly known for its ability to generate energy on its own from large facilities and, more recently, from advanced modular reactors.

However, using nuclear for cogeneration may allow nuclear energy to accommodate a wider range of products, such as cooling, heating, desalination, and hydrogen. According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, the performance of a nuclear power plant may actually increase if used in a cogeneration mode.

Newcleo’s LFRs will be used to cogenerate energy to decarbonize Viaro’s operations as the company said it aims to support the eventual transition away from fossil fuels.

“The partnership with Newcleo is a major milestone in our strategy to exemplify the only economically viable approach to the energy transition by investing in both energy security and long-term net-zero goals,” said Franceso Mazzagatti, CEO of Viaro Energy. “We are proud to spearhead decarbonization efforts in the oil and gas sector through the implementation of Newcleo’s clean nuclear energy technology into our operations.”

Additional articles you will be interested in.

Stay Informed

Get E+E Leader Articles delivered via Newsletter right to your inbox!

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Share This