Nuclear plant

The British Naval programme has seen five new core designs pass from concept into manufacture at Rolls-Royce. Three core designs were developed for the basic PWR1 plant with two further designs developed for the larger PWR2 plant.

However, new core designs do not suddenly appear. Between establishing the initial requirement and prototype operation there are many years of cooperative multi-disciplinary effort.

020 Plant Main

The success achieved is well illustrated by the changes in the ratio of core power to hydraulic power and the dramatic fall in reactor noise.

Features and benefits

  • Has supported continuous at sea deterrent since April 1968
  • Long-life core lasts the entire life of the submarine eliminating costly mid-life refuelling
  • Designed by Rolls-Royce on behalf of the UK Ministry of Defence
  • Allows the submarines to operate for long periods submerged only restricted by the food on board
  • Each generation of reactor plant has seen improvement in stealth for the submarine

Rolls-Royce, working with the Ministry of Defence is developing an integrated and coherent programme to support technology insertion into the current submarine classes and Astute.

The latest PWR3 project, which is the largest design project across Rolls-Royce, will form the foundation for the Successor programme propulstion system. The PWR3 plant will deliver a huge improvement in terms of safety, integrity and availability, while at the same time reducing the through-life costs; a major part of the SEPP commitments made by Rolls-Royce.



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