Foundation slab completed at Akkuyu 4

09 August 2023

The pouring of concrete for the foundation slab of the reactor building at Turkey's Akkuyu unit 4 has been finished - it involved 17,500 cubic metres of concrete mix.

The aim is to have all four units in operation by the end of 2028 (Image: Akkuyu NPP)

The project team said they can now move on to construction of the reactor cavity walls.

Akkuyu Nuclear JSC CEO Anastasia Zoteeva said it "represents one of the key events of the year at the fourth power unit of our plant". She added her thanks to the builders for their "well-coordinated uninterrupted work".

The concrete used has to pass numerous quality checks during the construction process. It includes materials -  crushed stone and sand - extracted from the Akkuyu site itself. The foundation slab includes 3500 tonnes of reinforcement steel bars to ensure the strength of the slab. When Akkuyu 2 reached the same stage, in 2020, the project team said that the weight of the fully operational reactor building would be about 470,000 tonnes, which means the foundation will have to "reliably bear a weight that is twice as much as the largest cruise liner in the world".

The Akkuyu plant, in the southern Mersin province, is Turkey's first nuclear power plant. Rosatom is building four VVER-1200 reactors, under a so-called BOO (build-own-operate) model. Construction of the first unit began in 2018. The 4800 MWe plant is expected to meet about 10% of Turkey's electricity needs, with the aim that all four units will be operational by the end of 2028.

At a ceremony to inaugurate the plant in April, Turkish energy minister Fatih Dönmez called it the single biggest investment in the country's history and said that 30,000 people had worked on the project, with the entire plant to include 550,000 separate parts and likely to operate for up to 80 years.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News