The Energy Department issued the Advanced Nuclear Energy Projects loan guarantee solicitation, which provides as much as $12.5 billion to support innovative nuclear energy projects.

This solicitation is on top of four solicitations already open: including the $16 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing (ATVM) loan program, an $8 billion Advanced Fossil Energy Projects solicitation announced last December, a $4 billion Renewable Energy and Efficient Energy Projects solicitation and $6.5 billion for two nuclear reactors.

The Department’s Loan Programs Office made the announcement for the solicitation December 10.

According to the solicitation the Department wants to identify the next big innovation, saying it will look “favorably” on projects that will have a “catalytic effect on the commercial deployment of future Advanced Nuclear Energy Projects.”

In addition to projects that incorporate advanced nuclear reactor designs, the solicitation also makes eligible fuel fabrication facilities that use innovative fabrication techniques and/or processes, or fabricate nuclear fuel for advanced nuclear power facilities, the solicitation says.

DOE has identified four key technology areas of interest in the solicitation: advanced nuclear reactors, small modular reactors, uprates and upgrades at existing facilities and front-end nuclear projects, although it says that any project that meets eligibility should apply.

The submission due date for Part I of the solicitation is due March 18, 2015.