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Economics Modeling Working Group (EMWG)

An Integrated Nuclear Energy Model is central to standardized and credible economic evaluation of Generation IV nuclear energy systems. The innovative nuclear systems considered within Generation IV require new tools for their economic assessment, since their characteristics differ significantly from those of current Generation II & III nuclear power plants. The current economic models were not designed to compare alternative nuclear technologies or systems but rather to compare nuclear energy with fossil alternatives.

This project has upgraded existing nuclear-economic sub models, and developed new ones where needed, addressing each of the following five economic areas: Capital/Production Cost Model (or Cost Model), Nuclear Fuel Cycle Model (or Fuel Model), Optimal Scale Model, and an Energy Products Model. Those five models have been integrated to provide a global economic assessment tool called G4Econs (Link to Resources). An Integrated Nuclear Energy Economics Model, combining all of the nuclear-economic models described above, will provide a robust tool for economic optimization during the viability and performance phases of the Generation IV project.

The document Cost Estimating Guidelines for Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems is a key element of the Economic Modeling Working Group's work to create an integrated nuclear energy economic model for application to Generation IV nuclear energy systems. It is intended to be a living document that has been updated successively to: further refine the different cost models; broaden the coverage of the economic assessment tools to energy products other than electricity, including hydrogen; and include an analysis of the economic impacts of plant size and modularity. The accompanying software G4Econs is used in conjunction with these guidelines to facilitate consistent, comprehensible cost estimates for evaluation of the Generation IV Nuclear Energy Systems with respect to the established economic goals. 

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