SK Group affiliates have invested US$250 million in US nuclear reactor design firm TerraPower for joint business opportunities.
The investment would let SK Inc., the holding company of SK Group, and SK Innovation Co., South Korea’s leading refiner, jointly develop next-generation technologies required for small modular reactors (SMRs).
The SK affiliates also plan to commercialize SMRs in South Korea and Southeast Asia.
Bill Gates, a co-founder of Microsoft, and the SK affiliates collectively invested $750 million in TerraPower.
The two SK companies signed a memorandum of understanding in May with the American company that Bill Gates founded in 2008 for the creation of SMRs and radioisotopes for the treatment of cancer and other medical purposes.
In October, the SK Group expressed interest in the competitiveness of SMRs as a reliable source of power without carbon emissions when it declared its intention to contribute 1 percent of the global carbon emission reduction goal by 2030.
SK Group has committed to reducing carbon emissions by 35 percent from 2020 levels by 2030, or 200 million tons of carbon, and by 85 percent by 2040.