Landmark module installation at Sanmen 4

08 September 2023

The CA01 'super module' has been installed at unit 4 of the Sanmen nuclear power plant in China's Zhejiang province, marking a construction landmark for the CAP1000 reactor.

The CA01 module is hoisted into place (Image: SNERDI)

Weighing 1046.2 tonnes and measuring more than 27 metres long, 29 metres wide and 24 metres high, the concrete and steel CA01 module sits inside the unit's containment module where it will house the plant's steam generators and other components. It is referred to as a super module because it is too large to be transported by road and rail, and was constructed on site.

The module is lowered into the containment building (Image: SNERDI)

The module was hoisted into place at Sanmen 4 on 6 September, the Shanghai Nuclear Engineering Research and Design Institute (SNERDI) announced.

"The successful installation of the CA01 module brings a successful conclusion to the large-scale hoisting work of unit 4 in 2023, and also opens a new stage of construction on the [nuclear] island," said SNERDI - a unit of the State Power Investment Corporation.

An aerial view of the module within the containment building (Image: SNERDI)

The construction of two new reactors at each of the Sanmen, Haiyang and Lufeng sites in China was approved by China's State Council in April 2021. The approvals were for Sanmen units 3 and 4, Haiyang 3 and 4 and units 5 and 6 of the Lufeng plant. The Sanmen and Haiyang plants are already home to two Westinghouse AP1000 units each, and two CAP1000 units were approved for Phase II (units 3 and 4) of each plant.

The CAP1000 reactor design - the Chinese version of the AP1000 - uses modular construction techniques, enabling large structural modules to be built at factories and then installed at the site.

The first safety-related concrete was poured for the nuclear island of Sanmen 3 on 28 June last year, marking the official start of its construction. The first concrete for that of unit 4 was poured on 22 March this year.

The largest and heaviest module - the cuboid-shaped CA20 - was installed at Sanmen 4 in April.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News