China signs up to four new units from Russia

08 June 2018

Russia and China have signed four agreements envisaging the construction of four VVER-1200 units at Xudabao and Tianwan, cooperation in the CFR-600 fast reactor pilot project, and supply of the RITEG (Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator) parts for China's lunar exploration programme. The signing ceremony was held today in Beijing and attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Two of the deals aim for construction of two units at a greenfield site in Xudabao and two at Tianwan (units 7 and 8). Russia will supply the VVER-1200 reactors and all related equipment.

Rosatom Director General Alexey Likhachov said that over the course of "longstanding cooperation with our reliable partners" - China's Atomic Energy Authority, the National Energy Administration, and the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) - "we have created an unprecedented level of trust".

The third agreement envisages the supply of equipment, fuel, and services for the CNNC-developed CFR-600 fast reactor pilot project. The fourth concerns the supply of radionuclide heat units (UHR) used as parts of radioisotope thermoelectric generators to power equipment in China's space programme, for use in lunar exploration in particular, Rosatom said.

The Tianwan units 1 and 2 were started up in 2007 and generate more than 15 terawatt hours of electricity every year. Unit 3 was connected to the grid on 30 December and is scheduled to enter commercial operation later this year.

The design of the Tianwan plant is based on Russia's AES-91 project with a VVER-1000 reactor, which fully meets the requirements of current Chinese, Russian, and International Atomic Energy Agency regulations, Rosatom said. Construction of the plant is being carried out by Jiangsu Nuclear Power Corporation (JNPC) in cooperation with Russia's Atomstroyexport. JNPC is a joint venture between CNNC (50%), China Power Investment Corporation (30%) and Jiangsu Guoxin Group (20%).

The State Council gave its approval for the third phase of the Tianwan plant (units 5 and 6) - both featuring Chinese-designed 1080 MWe ACPR1000 reactors - on 16 December 2015. First safety-related concrete was poured for unit 5 later that month and for unit 6 in September 2016. Unit 5 is expected to enter commercial operation in December 2020 and unit 6 in October 2021.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News