Nuclear power is currently the largest single source of carbon-free energy in the United States and in many other countries across the globe. Increased global energy demands driven by digitization and the correlation between energy access and higher standards of living are running counter to decarbonization efforts that rely solely on solar and wind technologies. Net zero strategies require a diverse energy mix, and nuclear energy technologies will play a big part.

New advances in fusion and fission technology, including small modular reactors and Generation IV reactors, have proven to be safe, emission-free solutions, and have seen increased investment in the past few years. According to Pitchbook, the fusion space has seen US$7.4 billion of capital invested across 88 companies in the past 5 years. Forming and financing the next nuclear venture comes with a unique set of challenges, particularly in navigating the complexities of a heavily regulated industry while managing the usual questions all startups face. At the same time, there is an increasing realization in the market and politically that maintaining and extending the life of the existing nuclear fleet would meaningfully advance goals to sustain a major source of carbon-free baseload power capacity.

Orrick offers a legal advisory solution that is unmatched in the market, bringing together one of the top Tech teams, which has advised 4000+ venture backed companies and investors on corporate formation, finance, IP and licensing matters and has helped clients pioneer new technologies, and one of the top Energy & Infrastructure teams, which has represented the owners and investors in the existing nuclear fleet of large-scale reactors in financing, project development, and engineering, procurement and construction matters for decades. Together, we help clients commercialize new technologies and advise utilities and other industry participants in matters related to the financing, ownership, development and construction of nuclear projects.

We advise a variety of participants in the nuclear market, including in relation to:

  • Capital raises, investments, project development, and availability of tax credits for the next generation of small modular and fusion reactor developers.
  • Agreements with the Department of Energy, including on Cooperative Research and Development Agreements and agreements with the Loan Programs Office.
  • Export controls and sanctions compliance.
  • Financing, developing, and operating the existing nuclear fleet.
  • Nuclear Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) for global corporations, including market-leading technology companies.
  • Domestic and international disputes and enforcement actions with respect to fuel supply and other issues.


  • #1 Energy Venture Capital – PitchBook
  • Band 1 – Energy Transition, Renewables and Power – Chambers USA 2023
  • #1 Global Legal Advisor for Power Purchase Agreements – inspiratia
  • #2 Energy Transition by deal volume – inspiratia
  • 280+ Energy Tech transactions since 2022 valued at over US$21 billion
  • 2,000+ Venture Financings since 2022 valued at over US$80 billion