Rosatom targets growth

03 June 2014

Russia should start up three new reactors this year at home, and another in India, said state company Rosatom in an official meeting with prime minister Dmitry Medvedev. The company said its order book for the next ten years is approaching $100 billion.

The official update is an annual event for Rosatom, the state corporation that includes most of the country's commercial nuclear operations. Medvedev met with Rosatom head Sergei Kiriyenko, himself a former prime minister.

Medvedev and Kiriyenko, June 2014 (460x269)
Medvedev and Kiriyenko yesterday (Image: Kremlin)

Kiriyenko hopes that three new nuclear units could be brought online in Russia this year. First should be Rostov 3, a VVER-1000 pressurized water reactor, where criticality should be achieved in October and first power in December.

At the Novovoronezh Phase II unit 1, criticality should come around December, said Kiriyenko. This unit is the first of the new VVER-1200 design, which Russia wants to deploy in large numbers: three more VVER-1200s are under already construction and another 14 planned in the timeframe to 2030.

Also this year the long-running project to construct Beloyarsk 4, a BN-800 fast reactor, is due to be complete. Fuel is already being loaded there and it could achieve criticality in December.

This trio of new nuclear units in Russia should complemented by the start-up of Kudankulam 2, which Rosatom has been building at the southern tip of India with Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd. The schedule for this, 'is more defined by the customer,' said Kiriyenko, 'but we understand the precise work we must complete.'

These projects (as well as further reactor projects in Bangladesh, Belarus, China, Finland, Hungary, India, Turkey, Kazakhstan and Vietnam) have helped boost Rosatom's order book to $98 billion for work in the next ten years, said Kiriyenko. This is approaching double the $50 billion reported two years ago. The order book also includes a range of nuclear goods and services Rosatom and its subsidiaries supply internationally, including uranium and nuclear fuel, but these were not discussed with Medvedev.

Medvedev welcomed the progress in public relations and community engagement. Plans to build new reactors at Paks in Hungary represent Rosatom's first project in the European Union, and in this regard Rosatom was organising seminars and workshops in Brussels as well as engaging in dialogue with the European Commission, said Kiriyenko. In Finland as well, he claimed local engagement had increased support for Fennovoima's project to build a new nuclear power plant at Hanhikivi.

All this, Medvedev concluded, 'will create a base' for Rosatom's development and in turn 'address major economic challenges' for Russia.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News