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20 Aug 2020

Belarusian nuclear power plant launch well on track

Belarusian nuclear power plant launch well on track
An archive photo

MINSK, 20 August (BelTA) – The commissioning of a nuclear power plant unit takes an average of ten years in the world. Belarus is well on track in this regard, BelTA learned from Maksim Mazurenko, Head of the Office for Oversight over the Nuclear and Radiation Safety of Nuclear Installations of the Nuclear and Radiation Safety Department of the Belarusian Emergencies Ministry (Gosatomnadzor), on 20 August.

The official said: “International practice allocates roughly ten years per power-generating unit – from zero to launch. One can say we are even ahead of that for now.”

Vigen Marukhyan, Head of the Nuclear Safety Regulation Office at Gosatomnadzor, added that the Belarusian nuclear power plant construction schedule should not be mixed with the schedule of Gosatomnadzor’s operations. Gosatomnadzor focuses on overseeing what is going on during the launch of the facility.

Vigen Marukhyan confirmed that judging from international practice it takes over ten years to commission a nuclear power plant unit. The time requirement depends on the design, the number of various systems and equipment at the site. For instance, the number of safeguards and equipment units that go with VVER-440 or VVER-1000 units is close to 600. The number is about 2,000 as far as VVER-1200 units are concerned. This is why in his opinion one should not equate the time required to commission a VVER-1000 unit and the time required to commission a VVER-1200 unit (the latter is being built in Belarus).

The Belarusian nuclear power plant is being built near Ostrovets, Grodno Oblast using the Russian design AES-2006 featuring two VVER-1200 reactors with the total output capacity of 2,400MW. The Russian state nuclear industry corporation Rosatom is the general contractor. Generation III+ reactor units boast improved technical and economic parameters. The power startup of the first unit and its connection to the country’s power grid are scheduled for Q4 2020. The launch of the second unit is supposed to take place in 2022.

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