Leningrad II-2 cleared for pilot operation

06 November 2020

Russian regulator Rostekhnadzor today issued a permit for the start of pilot operation at unit 2 of the Leningrad II nuclear power plant in western Russia. Pilot operation is the final and longest check of the power unit before commissioning and will last about four months, Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom said. During this time, the power of the reactor will be increased in stages to 100% and undergo about 200 system tests.

Units 1 and 2 at Leningrad II in Sosnovy Bor (Image: Rosatom)

"After reaching 100% capacity, completing all the prescribed tests at a given power level and flawless and non-stop operation for at least 15 days, the power unit will be shut down to check the equipment and put it into industrial operation, after approval from the state commission," the plant's chief engineer, Alexander Belyaev, said.

Start-up operations at the unit, also known as Leningrad-6, began on 19 July, when the first fuel assemblies with fresh nuclear fuel were loaded into the reactor core. After full loading, the reactor was brought to the minimum controlled power level that gave rise to a series of tests. At the end of these, on 22 October, the unit was connected to the country's grid. When it is in commercial operation, its daily output will be about 28 MWh of electricity. The commissioning of the unit is scheduled for 2021.

The existing Leningrad plant site in Sosnovy Bor has four RBMK-1000 units, while Leningrad II will have four VVER-1200 units. Leningrad unit 1 was shut down for decommissioning on 21 December 2018. Leningrad II unit 1 was connected to the grid on 9 March 2018, becoming the second VVER-1200 reactor to start up, following the launch in 2016 of Novovoronezh unit 6.

Leningrad II-2 will replace Leningrad-2, an RBMK reactor that has been in operation for 45 years.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News