Several improvements have been made in the nuclear energy sector during the last decade leading to new design for advanced nuclear power plants. Literature presents several studies about the economics of these new Power Plants, however the economic analysis of these plants usually considers only the classical accounts related to Construction, Operation & Maintenance, Fuel and Decommissioning. Beside these accounts there are many factors, from now on named External Factors (e.g. social acceptability, enhanced safety, emergency planning zone reduction, etc.) able to heavily determine the profitability of the investment. This paper presents the differential impact of these External Factors on nuclear technology with different sizes. According to the classification currently in use in the IAEA, small reactors are those with electric generation power lower than 300 MW, while medium sized reactors are those with electric power between 300 and 700 MW [1]. We define “Small Medium Reactors” (SMR) reactors with an electrical output smaller than 700 MW (usually 335 MWe) and as “Large reactors”, (LR) reactors with an equivalent electric power greater than 700 MW. (usually 1340 MWe) Starting from the international literature point of view, the paper provides a list of external factors distinguished in economically quantifiable or not. Two different approaches have been used for their assessment: a monetary ranking and a strategic one. Then, using a Quality Function Deployment approach, a multi-attribute model is introduced to obtain a weight for every external factor, dividing their impacts into three sustainability dimensions (economic, environmental and social). The results show that the new SMR perform better than LR thanks to the smaller size which allows an enhancement of the safety level (which affects the public opinion) and a greater flexibility in the market.

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