Russia starts installation work at fuel fabrication facility

15 June 2020

Work has started on installation of the main equipment for the nuclear fuel fabrication facility (FRU) at the pilot energy complex (ODEK) in Seversk (Tomsk). Under construction at the Siberian Chemical Combine, ODEK is part of Russia’s Proryv (Breakthrough) project, which is designed to demonstrate a closed fuel cycle. SCC is part of fuel company TVEL, which is a subsidiary of state nuclear corporation Rosatom.

How the pilot energy complex will look (Image: Rosatom)

The ultimate aim is to eliminate production of radioactive waste from nuclear power generation. The Breakthrough project comprises a fuel production/refabrication module for production of dense uranium-plutonium (nitride) fuel for fast reactors; a nuclear power plant with a BREST reactor; and a used fuel retreatment module.

The first shop-floor prepared for equipment installation is the decontamination section of the fuel rod production line. Currently, there are over 40 items of equipment with a total weight of about 110 tonnes at the FRU site.

"There is no other such equipment anywhere else in the world and, thus, no typical approach for construction of such facilities," Alexander Gusev, SSE deputy director general in charge of the Proryv project, said in a Rosatom statement today. "This project is totally unique, from the drawings to the installation schemes,” he added.

Installation of the main technological equipment is being worked out in advance in digital mode (4D modeling) in order to "minimise any possible mismatches and optimise the sequence of works", Rosatom said.

The installation of equipment at the FRU will take about 18 months. The site of the future 300 MW nuclear power plant, powered by the BREST-OD-300 reactor, is being prepared for the start of construction work.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News