KHNP granted construction permit for Shin-Kori 3 and 4

25 April 2008

Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) announced that it has been granted a construction licence for the first two APR-1400 reactors, Shin-Kori 3 and 4, near Busan, South Korea.

Shin Kori 3 & 4 

How Shin-Kori 3 and 4 will look
(Image : KHNP)

The company applied for a construction permit for the two units in September 2003. Under original plans, Shin-Kori 3 and 4 were scheduled to begin operating around 2010. However, due to bureaucratic and political delays, approval for the project has been slow. Construction of the reactors was eventually approved by Yeong-joo Kim, minister of commerce, industry and energy, on 13 September 2007. The government of President Lee Myung-bak, who took power in February 2008 following presidential elections in December, issued a construction licence for the reactors on 15 April.


KHNP placed an order worth $1.2 billion for components of Shin-Kori 3 and 4 with Doosan Heavy Industries in August 2006. Doosan then contracted $300 million of this work to Westinghouse. In all, the units are expected to cost $5 billion. A consortium led by Hyundai will actually construct the power units. The overall cost of the project is $6.3 billion over seven years.


A ceremony to mark the commencement of construction work was held at the Shin-Kori site in November, and excavation work started in Janaury. First concrete for Shin-Kori 3 is scheduled to be poured in October 2008, while that for unit 4 will be poured a year later. Commercial operation of the two reactors is set for September 2013 and September 2014, respectively. KHNP plans to apply for operating licences for the reactors in June 2011. The two new pressurized water reactors (PWRs) will produce 1350 MWe each and should operate over design lives of 60 years.


KHNP, the owner of all 20 of South Korea's nuclear power reactors, has held a licensee relationship with Westinghouse since the late 1980s when the US-based company supplied the 945 MWe System 80 nuclear steam supply design for Yonggwang 3 and 4. After that, KHNP was able to develop variants of System 80 for its own requirements under technology transfer terms in the licence agreement.

After introducing domestic innovations and updating technology over time, KHNP came up with the Korean Standard Nuclear Plant (KNSP), then the OPR-1000 and the APR-1400.

The APR-1400 technology for Shin-Kori 3 and 4 represents a further evolution in power output, operation and safety of that design. The construction and power generation costs of the APR-1400 are reported to be 10% lower than those of OPR-1000 units.


Units 1 and 2


Shin-Kori 1 reactor vessel 
(Image: KHNP)


Shin-Kori 1 and 2, which are of the OPR-1000 design, are already half-constructed. A ceremony took place at the end of last month to celebrate the installation of the reactor pressure vessel of unit 1. KHNP said the major component, which was made in South Korea, has an internal diameter of 4.1 meters, while it is some 14.5 meters long and weighs 350 tonnes.