20 more years for India's FBTR

15 February 2011

Scientists at the Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research (IGCAR) have successfully extended the operating life of the 40 MWt fast breeder test reactor (FBTR) for another 20 years, the Times of India reported. IGCAR director Baldev Raj said, "We have extended the life of the FBTR for another 20 years up to 2030 at 50% operational capacity." He added, "The workhorse reactor has completed 25 successful years. It has given confidence to the Indian scientists to go ahead and build the first 500 MWe prototype fast breeder reactor (PFBR) which is under advanced stage of construction; and at least four more fast breeder reactors (FBRs) by 2020." IGCAR said that the FBTR's major task over the remainder of the unit's life would be large-scale irradiation of the advanced metallic fuels and core structural materials required for the next generation fast reactors with high breeding ratios. The FBTR - a liquid metal fast breeder reactor - has been operating at Kalpakkam since 1985.