Grid connection for second Shin Hanul unit

02 January 2024

Unit 2 of the Shin Hanul nuclear power plant in South Korea has began supplying its first electricity to the grid, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) announced. The unit is the second of two APR-1400 reactors at the site, with a further two planned.

Shin Hanul units 1 and 2 (Image: KHNP)

In a LinkedIn post, KHNP said the 1350 MWe pressurised water reactor was connected to the grid on 21 December. "Grid connection means connecting the electricity generated at the nuclear power plant to the transmission line and sending it to general households and industrial sites," it noted.

The company added: "Shin Hanul unit 2 is the 28th nuclear power unit in Korea, and plans to contribute to the winter power peak with the power generated from today."

Workers celebrate the grid connection of Shin Hanul 2 (Image: KHNP)

Ground breaking for the first two units at the Shin Hanul (formerly Shin Ulchin) site took place in May 2012. First concrete for unit 1 was poured two months later, with that for unit 2 following in June 2013. Shin Hanul 1 achieved first criticality on 22 May 2022 and was connected to the grid on 9 June last year.

Shin Hanul 2 received an operating licence from the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission on 7 September, after which it completed a preliminary inspection by the regulator. The loading of 241 fuel assemblies into the reactor's core was carried out between 11 and 18 September. High-temperature functional tests were subsequently conducted.

Unit 2 reached first criticality - a sustained chain reaction - on 6 December.

After major tests at each power output stage, it is scheduled to begin full-scale commercial operation in the first half of 2024.

Shin Hanul 2 becomes south Korea's fourth operational APR1400 - after Saeul units 1 and 2 (formerly Shin Kori 3 and 4) and Shin Hanul unit 1. Two further APR1400s are under construction as Saeul units 3 and 4, with two more units planned as Shin Hanul units 3 and 4.

Four APR1400 units have been built at the Barakah nuclear power plant in the UAE, three of which are now in operation, with the fourth currently in its commissioning phase.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News