Great Lakes Crystal Technologies (GLCT), a high-tech startup in Michigan’s Capitol Region, announced today that its DOE Phase I SBIR proposal entitled “Diamond Rheometer for the Measurement of High-Temperature Molten Salts” has been selected for funding.

In this effort GLCT will develop a novel molten salt density and viscosity sensor (DVS) technology that will be used to monitor the molten salt chemistry in molten salt based Small Modular Reactors (SMRs). This DVS technology has the potential to provide important feedback to SMR scientists seeking to optimize SMR preventive maintenance activities towards achieving wide scale deployment.

The project will be led by GLCT’s chief scientist Dr. Paul Quayle and will include advanced sensor testing by GLCT staff at Argonne National Laboratory’s Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM).

Dr. Alex High, who has a joint appointment at UChicago and Argonne, helped the GLCT team understand the sensor testing capabilities that Argonne has to offer and introduced the GLCT team to Argonne scientist Dr. David Czaplewski who will provide guidance during the sensor testing.”

Dr. Quayle stated “We are very excited about the potential of this project, and we are very thankful for the generous support we received in our planning stage from Argonne scientists Alex High and David Czaplewski.”

Dr. Keith Evans, GLCT president & CEO, added, “We are thankful to DOE for supporting this project which has great potential to make a significant impact on the future of molten salt based small nuclear reactors. Paul did a great job building a compelling proposal and leveraging the great relationships we are building with the UChicago / Argonne technical community.”

According to US Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy, “Advanced Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) are a key part of the Department’s goal to develop safe, clean, and affordable nuclear power options. […] Advanced SMRs offer many advantages, such as relatively small physical footprints, reduced capital investment, ability to be sited in locations not possible for larger nuclear plants, and provisions for incremental power additions. SMRs also offer distinct safeguards, security and nonproliferation advantages.”

About Great Lakes Crystal Technologies (GLCT)

GLCT’s mission is to become the leading provider of high-performance diamond materials for high-technology applications. GLCT launched in 2019 as a Michigan State University (MSU) startup with early support from Spartan Innovations and Red Cedar Ventures. The company has also benefited from the positive Michigan based ecosystem for startups receiving the Business Accelerator Fund and Emerging Technologies Fund, both of which are administered by the Michigan Small Business Development Center in partnership with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. GLCT is a founding member of the Quantum Economic Development Consortium, a corporate partner of the Chicago Quantum Exchange (CQE), a member of the UCSB NSF Quantum Foundry industrial advisory board, and a member of the Resilient Infrastructure + Secure Energy (RISE) Consortium. For more information about GLCT visit our website or send us an email.