China’s Fangchenggang-4 connects to grid

April 17, 2024, 7:00AMNuclear News
Fangchenggang nuclear power plant in Guangxi. (Photo: CGN)

China’s second demonstration reactor—Fangchenggang Unit 4—connected to the grid on April 9, China General Nuclear Power Group has announced. Located in the autonomous region of Guangxi, the reactor achieved first criticality April 3.

The background: Units 3 and 4 at the site are Hualong One (HPR1000) demonstration reactors capable of producing 1180 MWe each. Construction began in 2015 and 2016, respectively, for the two units, which were originally expected to come on line in 2019 and 2020, but plans were delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hot functional testing of Fangchenggang-4 began last September, and China's National Nuclear Safety Administration issued the unit’s license in February.

Fangchenggang- 3 and -4 are 39 percent owned by Guangxi Investment Group and 61 percent owned by CGN.

What’s next: The Fangchenggang plant will eventually house six reactors. Units 1 and 2 (both CPR-1000s) began commercial operation in 2016. The forthcoming Fangchenggang-5 and -6 will be Hualong One reactors, China’s independent Gen III technology.

China has nine other Hualong One units under construction at four different sites. The country is on pace to add as many as 10 new nuclear reactors a year and could surpass the United States’ nuclear capacity by 2030. China’s goal is to increase its nuclear capacity to about 400 gigawatts by 2060, which would provide for 18 percent of the country’s energy generation.

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