Light shed on Chinese advanced reactor decisions

02 March 2007

Westinghouse and its partner Shaw have signed a framework agreement to build four reactors in China. The sites mentioned shed light on rumours for Areva units planned for China.

A framework agreement has been signed between Westinghouse with its partner Shaw and China's State Nuclear Power Technology Company to supply four AP1000 third-generation nuclear power reactors. The sites specified for the 1100 MWe units are Haiyang in Shandong province for one pair, and Sanmen in Zhejian province for the second pair.

Final contracts would be signed in mid 2007, construction is expected to start in 2009 with first power in 2013.  

A December 2006 announcement from Westinghouse had mentioned the Yanjiang site in Guangdong province. This site is now apparently open for a pair of 1650 MWe Areva EPR reactors in line with a cooperation agreement signed last month by Electricité de France (EdF) and
China Guangdong Nuclear Power Company (CGNPC) based on two EPRs.

CGNPC has an established preference for French technology. Their four operating reactors, and two more under construction at Lingao, are based on French developments of designs originally licensed from Westinghouse. CGNP's first two units, at Daya Bay near Hong Kong, which started up in 1994 were built with the involvement of EdF and chinese engineers to standard French designs.

The Chinese companies

Sanmen would be built and operated by the Sanmen Nuclear Power Company, set up in April 2005 by the Zhejian provincial government and 51% owned by China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC). Sanmen is south of the Qinshan site in Zhejian province.

Haiyang would be built and operated by the Shandong Nuclear Power Company, set up in 2004 as a subsidiary of China Power Investment Corporation (CPI). Haiyang is well north of Qinshan and a little further north than Tianwan where two Russian VVER-1000 reactors are being commissioned.

Yangjiang Nuclear Power Co Ltd was set up in 2005 under China Guangdong Nuclear Power Co (CGNPC) and is in charge of construction and operation of Yangjiang nuclear power station, in the far south of China.

The State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation (SNPTC), directly under China's State Council, is in charge of technology selection for new plants being bid from overseas. Its involvement with the new plans for Yangjiang is presumed but unknown.

Further information

Westinghouse Electric

WNA's Nuclear Power in China information paper

WNN: Areva to discuss contract with China
WNN: Westinghouse chosen by China