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A roundup of tech news

Laboratory featuring nuclear power plant control room simulator unveiled at Idaho Falls 

A NuScale representative conducts training on the nuclear power plant control room simulator for students and faculty at CAES. Photo courtesy of INL

The Center for Advanced Energy Studies (CAES) has announced the opening of its newest laboratory, the Small Modular Reactor (SMR) Simulator Laboratory, featuring NuScale Power’s Energy Exploration (E2) Center, at its Idaho Falls headquarters. The new lab features a virtual nuclear power plant control room that allows users to assume the role of operator to learn about NuScale’s SMR technology. For CAES, the new lab offers benefits to the energy workforce, stakeholders seeking education and collaborative research. NuScale’s SMR is the first to receive design approval from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, according to recent announcement. The first module is expected to be fully commercially operational by the end of the decade. Tentative plans call for the first NuScale power plant to be constructed on Idaho National Laboratory’s site as part of the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems Carbon Free Power Project. CAES’s new laboratory is the result of a $286,000 award that CAES-affiliated University of Idaho professor Richard Christensen obtained in 2019 through the Department of Energy’s Nuclear Energy University Program. Christensen is the principal investigator of the project, which involves University of Idaho professors Robert Borrelli, Michael Haney and Michael McKellar, and NuScale’s Derrick Botha.

Idaho companies named to Inc 5000 list

Twenty-six private Idaho companies have demonstrated rapid growth over the past four years according to the annual Inc. 5000 list; and 19 of those companies are returning honorees. Proud Source Water came out on top of Idaho’s companies, at 59. This is the fourth time Stukent has made the list, this time ranked No. 1,649, along with Ventive at No. 3637. Get Found First is now in its second year. The other Idaho companies are: Gymreapers, Bartlett Homes & Roofing, Dollar Fulfillment, Dietary Supplement Experts, VELOX Media, Kno2, Amherst Madison Treasure Valley, RackSimply, Petersen Brothers Construction, Macs Designs, Ataraxis PEO, Pointe Pest Control | ID, WA, OR, MT, Magic Valley Electric, ClickFunnels, Outback Landscape, Conklin & Company, Elite Restoration, Verified First, Recor Group, In Time Tec, Oxyfresh Worldwide and Assisting Hands Home Care. The complete Inc. 5000 list, and more information, can be found at inc.com/inc5000.

TDS expanding to Nampa

TDS Telecom has finalized plans with local officials to build a nearly 800-mile fiber internet network in Nampa, making it the 11th Idaho city to host the company, fourth in the Treasure Valley. The $70 million project will bring up to 2GB internet download and upload speeds, along with TV and phone service, to approximately 46,000 addresses — about 42,000 residential, and roughly 3,800 commercial locations. Construction is scheduled to begin by the end of the year, with the first homes expected to be connected in 2022.

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