Pakistan's Chashma 3 completes acceptance test

09 December 2016

Pakistan's fourth reactor - unit 3 of the Chashma nuclear power plant in Punjab province - has passed a preliminary acceptance test, supplier China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) has announced.

Chashma units 3 and 4 - 460 (CNEC)
Chashma units 3 and 4 (Image: China Nuclear Engineering & Construction Corp)

Construction began on the Chinese-designed CNP-300 pressurised water reactor in March 2011. The unit achieved first criticality on 3 October and was connected to the grid on 15 October. The unit's output has since been gradually increased to 100%.

In a 7 December statement, CNNC said Chashma 3 completed a "100-hour reliability demonstration test" at 3.30am on 6 December, marking the end of acceptance tests for the unit. The reactor is expected to enter commercial operation before the end of this year.

Chashma 3 is one of two CNP-300 units being built at the site. Unit 4, which began construction nine months after unit 3, is currently undergoing commissioning and is expected to be connected to the grid during the first half of 2017.

The Chashma site - also referred to as Chasnupp - is already home to two Chinese-supplied 300 MWe PWRs: unit 1, in commercial operation since 2000, and unit 2, in commercial operation since 2011. Pakistan also has a 125 MWe Canadian-supplied pressurized heavy water reactor, Karachi unit 1, which has been in commercial operation since 1972.

Two 1161 MWe Chinese-supplied Hualong One plants are also planned at the Karachi site. A ground-breaking ceremony for Karachi 2 was held in August 2015, and the units are scheduled to enter service in 2021 and 2022.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News