Bulgaria to evaluate NuScale SMRs for Kozloduy

February 22, 2021, 12:08PMNuclear News

Bulgaria’s Kozloduy nuclear plant

Portland, Ore.–based NuScale Power has signed a memorandum of understanding with Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant–New Build Plc (KNPP-NB) to discuss the possible deployment of NuScale’s small modular reactor technology at Bulgaria’s Kozloduy site. KNPP-NB was established in 2012 to commission new nuclear power capacity at Kozloduy.

Specifics: Under the MOU, NuScale will support KNPP-NB as it analyzes the suitability of NuScale’s SMRs for Kozloduy, located in northwest Bulgaria. The analysis will include the development of a project time line “with milestone deliverables for a feasibility study” and a project-specific cost estimate, as well as engineering, planning, licensing, and other activities, according to a February 17 NuScale press release.

Armenia to extend operation of Metsamor-2

January 25, 2021, 3:00PMNuclear News

Cooling towers at the Metsamor nuclear plant. Photo: ANPP

Armenia plans to extend the operational life of Unit 2 at Metsamor (also matter-of-factly known as the Armenian nuclear power plant) beyond 2026 and has not abandoned plans to construct a new reactor, the Armenian news agency ARKA reported on January 14, citing the country’s new cabinet-approved strategy for energy sector development through 2040. (The Armenian government in 2014 decided to extend Unit 2’s service life to 2026.)

The nuclear advantage: “Having a nuclear power plant in the energy system will allow Armenia to diversify its energy resources, avoid increasing the country’s dependence on imported natural gas, as well as cut the volume of emissions,” the strategy document states, according to ARKA. “The government remains committed to its policy of having a nuclear power plant in the country’s generating capacity. In this context, it should be noted that the option of maximally extending the operating life of the nuclear power plant is a guarantee of the development of the system at the lowest cost.”

Bulgaria joins Nuclear Energy Agency

January 7, 2021, 9:30AMNuclear News

Bulgaria’s Kozloduy nuclear plant. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Gogo89873

Bulgaria has become the 34th member of the Paris-based OECD Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA). With its several decades of experience operating VVER units, Bulgaria will reinforce the NEA’s capacity to address matters related to pressurized water reactor technologies and their operational characteristics, according to the NEA on January 4.

In addition, the NEA said that it will support Bulgaria’s efforts in technical and policy areas, including work to address nuclear skills capacity building, the development and application of nuclear data and simulation codes, and issues related to radioactive waste management, decommissioning, and nuclear economics.

Foundation slabs for Akkuyu-2 reactor, turbine buildings completed

September 28, 2020, 3:02PMNuclear News

Concrete pouring for the foundation slabs for the Akkuyu-2 reactor and turbine buildings has been completed, Akkuyu Nuclear has announced. Unit 2 is one of four reactors under construction at the Akkuyu site, located on the Mediterranean coast in southern Turkey.

More than 17,000 cubic meters (about 600,350 cubic feet) of concrete have been poured into the Akkuyu-2 reactor building’s foundation, The company reported on September 23. The area of the concrete slab is 6,864 square meters (about 73,883 square feet), while its height and depth are 2.6 meters (about 8.5 feet) and over 8 meters (over 26 feet), respectively, according to the company.

China’s Tianwan-5 attains first criticality

August 5, 2020, 7:30AMNuclear News

Reactor operators bring Tianwan’s Unit 5 to first criticality. Photo: CNNC

Unit 5 at the Tianwan nuclear power plant in China achieved initial criticality on July 27, marking “the completion of the commissioning of the overall system and equipment of the unit,” according to Jiangsu Nuclear Power Corporation, the plant’s owner and operator.

Hydraulic testing completed on Akkuyu-1 reactor vessel

July 22, 2020, 11:49AMNuclear News

The Akkuyu-1 reactor pressure vessel. Photo: Atomenergomash

Atommash has completed hydraulic testing of the reactor pressure vessel for Unit 1 at the Akkuyu nuclear power plant, the four-unit facility currently under construction on the Mediterranean coast in southern Turkey. Atommash is part of Atomenergomash, the engineering division of Rosatom, which is Russia’s state atomic energy agency.

VVER units planned for Leningrad and Smolensk

July 8, 2020, 9:50AMNuclear News

Leningrad nuclear plant. Photo: Rosenergoatom

Preparations have begun for the construction of four nuclear reactors in Russia—two VVER-1200 units at the Leningrad plant and two VVER-TOI units near the Smolensk plant, according to Rosenergoatom, a division of Russia’s state-owned atomic energy corporation Rosatom.

Rosenergoatom operates all of Russia’s nuclear power facilities. Authorization to move forward with the new-build projects was signed by Alexey Likhachev, Rosatom’s director general.