Grid connection for first Fuqing unit

21 August 2014

Fuqing 1 grid connection 250 (CNNC)

Unit 1 of the Fuqing nuclear power plant in China's Fujian province has been connected to the electricity grid, becoming China National Nuclear Corporation's (CNNC's) tenth operating power reactor. It is expected to enter commercial operation by the end of the year.

The Chinese-developed CPR-1000 was connected to the grid at 5.08pm on 20 August, CNNC said.

Construction of the 1087 MWe unit began in November 2008. The reactor achieved first criticality on 24 July, since when core physics tests and testing of the steam generators followed, as well as the start up of all the units' turbines. Network testing at Fuqing 1 began on 13 August. Various tests - including load testing and transient tests - will now be carried out before the reactor reaches full power. Additional approvals needs to be obtained from relevant government authorities before the unit officially enters commercial operation, expected in November.

Low-carbon displaces coal in Poland's plan

21 August 2014

Belchtow coal mine and power plant (Greenpeace Polska - Bogusz Bilewski) 74x48Poland will reduce dependence on brown and black coal by introducing nuclear power and renewables, according a draft energy policy to 2050 released for consultation.

Damaged Paks fuel sent to Russia

20 August 2014

The used fuel assemblies that were damaged during a chemical cleaning process at Hungary's Paks nuclear power plant in 2003 have been transported to Russia for processing.

Reactor internals installed at Sanmen AP1000

20 August 2014

Sanmen 1 internals (CNNC) 72x48At Sanmen 1 the first components of the reactor itself have been put into position after a year of preparation. The reactor internals are steel structures sit within the reactor pressure vessel and will support the fuel assemblies and control rods.

AP1000s mooted for Utah site

21 August 2014

Westinghouse and Blue Castle Holdings have signed a memorandum of understanding to pursue the development of a two-unit AP1000 plant at Green River in Utah.

Tianwan 3 vessel passes pressure tests

20 August 2014

Tianwan VVER vessel 48The VVER-1000 reactor vessel for the third unit of the Tianwan nuclear power plant in China's Jiangsu province has successfully completed hydraulic tests at the manufacturing plant in Russia.

Impact of Mount Polley breach

19 August 2014

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission has issued a 'request for action' to licensees of uranium mines and mils with tailings facilities in response to tailings dam breach earlier this month at the Mount Polley open pit copper and gold mine in British Columbia.

Editorial

The nuclear industry needs to satisfy the multi-criteria approach to risk that banks take when they decide whether to invest in a large infrastructure project. Only then, can it expect to attract this form of financing to nuclear new build projects, writes Ron Cameron.

Specifically, banks look for long-term certainty on price, stable government policy, industry reputation, regulatory certainty, the process for addressing planning and environmental issues and public acceptance, in addition to the economics of the project.

European wholesale electricity markets are currently not favourable to nuclear power, however. That’s because the role of nuclear in offsetting the negative effect on price of feed-in tariffs and grid priorities for renewable forms of energy is not adequately recognised. The cost to the system of having intermittency of supply is often borne by the nuclear plants through their role in providing back-up or otherwise by the consumer through higher electricity prices, subsidies or taxes. Read more...  

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