Ukraine pushes storage facility completion to end-September

21 May 2020

All construction and installation works at the construction site of the Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility (CSFSF) at the site of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine is expected to be completed by the end of September. The country’s nuclear power plant operator, Energoatom, announced the new target date following a meeting at the site by its acting president, Petr Kotin, on 15 May in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.

Re-bars laid for the CSFSF Storage pad (Image: Energoatom)

The facility, which Energoatom and the USA's Holtec International started building in 2017, will store used fuel from three of Ukraine's four nuclear power plants. It will use 458 of Holtec's HI-STORM containers, which will be able to store 16,529 used fuel assemblies.

The project has been delayed by six months owing to a countrywide lockdown imposed in early March in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Energoatom had also imposed a ban on international travel by its employees, including to the USA where the contractor for the CSFSF - Holtec International - is based. The government started reopening the economy on 11 May.

Energoatom said that the CSFSF will save the company about USD140 million of the USD200 million it currently spends annually on the removal and transport of used fuel to Russia for reprocessing. In February 2018, the company arranged a USD250 million loan from Overseas Private Investment Corp of the USA and will use USD50 million from its own funds to complete the project.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News