Tagged: Russia

Nuclear News Round Up (3rd – 7th Mar 14)

3rd Mar 2014
4th Mar 2014
6th Mar 2014
7th Mar 2014

Nuclear News Round Up (24th – 28th March 14)

Rosatom signs contract to build Finnish nuclear plant

Rosatom signs contract to build Finnish nuclear plant

Rusatom Overseas, a division of Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom, signed a contract with Finland’s Fennovoima for the construction of the Hanhikivi 1 nuclear power plant, Rosatom said. Fennovoima, the company that has commissioned the construction of the NPP, and TVEL, Rosatom’s nuclear fuel division, also signed a fuel agreement for the future NPP.

Russian nuclear power plants may be built in UK
However, a contract on Rusatom Overseas acquiring a 34 percent stake in Fennovoima was not signed. Rosatom said that Voimaosakeyhtio SF, which represents more than 60 Fennovoima shareholders from various regions of Finland, and Rusatom Overseas signed an agreement setting out the conditions of responsibilities and stakes in the project.
The document calls for Rusatom Overseas to take a 34 percent equity stake in Fennovoima.

As a result of the contract, Rosatom divisions will build 20 NPP generating units abroad, and the group’s portfolio of contracts to build NPP, supply fuel, enriched uranium products and other services will top $74 billion.

Read the full article here http://rbth.ru/news/2013/12/24/rosatom_signs_contract_to_build_finnish_nuclear_plant_32858.html

Source: Russia Beyond the headlines

Growing nuclear industry becomes a global power

Growing nuclear industry becomes a global power

Critics expected the sector to stagnate after Fukushima but Russia plans to build plants with the latest safety features all over the world.

Rosatom, the Russian state nuclear corporation, has concluded a record number of transactions this year for the construction of nuclear power plants. Rosatom will build the first nuclear power plants in Bangladesh and Jordan, expand its presence in China and India with the help of new power units, and build the Hanhikivi-1 nuclear power plant (NPP) in north-west Finland. The company is also negotiating an agreement on co-operation with South Africa.

Russian nuclear power plants may be built in UK
Rosatom also started new construction work in 2013: the Akkuyu NPP in Turkey, a nuclear power plant in Belarus and a plant for the production of nuclear fuel in Ukraine. The Russian company offers its customers new reactors that are innovative in terms of security. For example, passive safety systems in the VVER-1200 reactor used in the NPP-2006 plant can guarantee that the so-called Fukushima scenario in Japan will never happen again.

Rosatom has 19 orders for the installation of similar reactors abroad and is building eight such reactors in Russia.

Package solutions

“In my opinion, the most important quality of Russian companies is the package proposal they come with to a potential customer,” said the independent nuclear expert Alexander Uvarov. This can be demonstrated by the example of South Africa, where a conference of nuclear suppliers, Atomex-Africa, was held last month. According to Mr Uvarov, the Russians have not only invited South African companies into the supply chain for new nuclear projects, but also offered the new partner a huge range of options for development of the entire spectrum of the nuclear fuel cycle.

These range from the establishment of research and education centres and the development of medical isotopes to a reactor and an enterprise for nuclear fuel production. In addition, Russian companies can provide up to 85% financing for nuclear power plant projects through export credits.

British energy

Rosatom’s achievements in 2013 suggest that its confidence for continued success in the future is not misplaced. It is too early to talk about specific technologies, but it is highly likely that Russian nuclear power plants generating electricity will appear in Britain in the coming years.

Read more here http://rbth.co.uk/science_and_tech/2013/12/17/growing_nuclear_industry_becomes_a_global_power_32661.html

Source: Russia: Beyond the Headlines

Russia Unveils Detailed Plans To Build 21 New Nuclear Power Units By 2030

Russia Unveils Detailed Plans To Build 21 New Nuclear Power Units By 2030

Plans & Construction

The Russian government has approved a plan to build 21 new nuclear power generation units across nine power stations by 2030 as part of a regional and territorial energy planning scheme.

The plan, released in a document published by the government’s official online portal for legal information, includes the construction of five new nuclear power stations with two units each, three new power plant units at locations where a commercial nuclear installation already exists, and the addition of one new unit at an existing plant site.

The five new nuclear power stations are:

• “Kostroma” in the Kostroma region, about 350 kilometres northeast of Moscow. It will consist of two VVER-1200 reactor units.

• “Nizhny Novgorod” in the Nizhny Novgorod region, about 330 kilometres east of Moscow. The site has been in the planning stage since 2008 and the location that has been chosen is in the Navashinsky district in the southwest of Nizhny Novgorod. The new station will consist of two VVER-1200 reactor units.

• “Tatar” in the Republic of Tatarstan, Volga district, western Russia. The station will be sited in the Kamskiy region, 130 kilometres east of Kazan, and will consist of two VVER-1200 reactor units.

• “Seversky” in the closed town of Seversk, about 20 kilometres north of Tomsk in south-central Russia. The station will be built near the Sibirskaya nuclear power plant, which in 1954 was the first industrial-scale nuclear plant in the then-USSR and was decommissioned in 2008. The new station will consist of two VVER-1200 reactor units.

• “South Ural” in the Kaslinsky district of the Chelyabinskaya oblast, about 200 kilometres southeast of Yekaterinburg. It will consist of two Generation IV BN-1200 sodium-cooled fast reactor units.

The Russian government also approved the construction of replacement capacity at three existing nuclear power stations which are near the end of their operational lifetimes.

The new plants will replace the Kola, Kursk and Smolensk nuclear plants by constructing two reactor units at the new Kola 2 site and four reactor units each at the new Kursk 2 and Smolensk 2 sites. All reactors will be of the VVER-1200 type.

The plan also approves the addition of a Generation IV BN-1200 type sodium-cooled fast reactor at the Beloyarsk nuclear station. The site already hosts one operational fast reactor unit of the BN-600 type and the construction of a BN-800 type is expected to be completed in 2014.

The BN-800 reactor will be the final step to a commercial plutonium cycle breeder reactor, which uses mixed uranium-plutonium fuel. This is seen as a major step towards reducing plutonium stockpiles stemming from reprocessing used nuclear fuel from other plants. It is a pool-type system where the reactor, primary coolant pumps, intermediate heat exchangers and associated piping are located in a common liquid sodium vessel.

The technical design of the BN-1200 reactor, planned for Beloyarsk and later for the South Ural plant, is due to be completed this year and the prototype construction at Beloyarsk is set to begin in 2015. The BN-1200 is an improvement on the BN-600 and BN-800 designs using larger fuel elements with a simplified refuelling procedure, the reactor’s designer and manufacturer, Afrikantov Experimental Design Bureau for Mechanical Engineering, has said.

The government plan says that the first unit at the Kursk 2 nuclear station will begin commercial operation by 2020. Another eight blocks will enter into service by 2025 and the remaining 12 by 2030.

According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, there are ten nuclear reactors at six sites under construction in Russia, including the two-unit floating nuclear plant Akademik Lemonosov.

Source: Nuc Net

BOO: exploring the model for emerging markets

BOO: exploring the model for emerging markets

By Elisabeth Jeffries

Russian nuclear energy company Rosatom’s creation of a new subsidiary, Rusatom Overseas, officially announced by the Russian government in October 2013, marks a milestone in nuclear management.

The company will use a ‘build own operate’ (BOO) model to build Turkey’s first NPP, based at Akkuyu in southern Turkey.  Construction is to start in 2015.

The company will use a ‘build own operate’ (BOO) model to build Turkey’s first NPP, based at Akkuyu in southern Turkey.  Construction is to start in 2015.

The BOO model preferred for Turkey’s first plant is unusual because the Russian power company will both build it, act as major operator and benefit from at least a 51% share in the long term.  This is a much greater share than most vendors. As Fiona Reilly, partner and head of nuclear Services at law firm Norton Rose Fulbright remarks, BOO models may present several advantages for newcomer nations.

“It all comes down to: what do you want from a first nuclear plant? If it is mainly electricity, the BOO model that Russia is providing to Turkey is a good option. However, if a country wants to start developing its own nuclear industry from day one out of it, a model that allows the host country to develop its own plant while teaching the host country about nuclear and ultimately allowing it to develop its own nuclear industry may be better,” she says.

On the other hand, “certain countries, such as the US, have laws which restrict ownership of strategic assets including nuclear power plant and therefore the Russian model being offered in Turkey would not be possible,” she adds. Speed is also a factor.  “There’s an element in the project of: we need electricity and we need it quickly so how do we do it – build, own, operate and finance the plant,” says Fiona Reilly.

Financial benefits

Even more significant, perhaps, is the financial benefit. A guaranteed price compensates Rosatom for 15 years. Meanwhile, the Russian company is due to provide a majority portion of the capital investment required. “It could otherwise be a slower process for Turkey for its first plant, putting together a deal with a consortium that would potentially bring in financing from various sources,” says Fiona Reilly.

As Greg Kaser, senior project manager at the World Nuclear Association (WNA) points out, local hydrocarbon assets affect a national decision on nuclear funding. “The BOO model provides potential access to investment from the supplier’s side which is attractive. BOO models may be a big selling point for developing countries like Jordan, Bangladesh or Turkey, especially if they have little or no oil. It does however depend on the suppliers being able to raise the finance, and government support to the supplier seems to be necessary, from export credit finance, for instance,” he states.

Russian reactors are also at present cheaper than some competitors. Kaser also points out: “there is a cost as well as a financing advantage to the country buying the nuclear power plant on a BOO basis as the investor-operator must have a secure long-term power purchase agreement in place.”


Plant ownership and operation also has an impact on liability for damage. One of the main decisions to make in the early phase of nuclear new build planningis the overall structure of the project and how ownership and operational interests may be separated. The allocation of nuclear liability in most cases will fall on the operator.  In some cases, there may be a strong argument against integration into a BOO plant structure.

“One reason for the separation of ownership and operation is the possibility of distancing investors who may have no experience or expertise in nuclear projects from nuclear operational issues and regulatory requirements that fall on the operator of a nuclear plant,” explains Fiona Reilly. In the general case of BOO plants, then, the investor may also have nuclear liability.

“Although the reasoning behind splitting ownership and operational interests is generally to ring fence nuclear liability with an operator entity, thus distancing investors, this only works in relation to third party nuclear liability which is, in any event, generally covered by nuclear insurance,” she adds. Investment structures can be reshaped to determine how liability is allocated.

Learning on the job

A major role is planned for nuclear power in Turkey, reducing dependence on gas from Russia and Iran. A second plant, due to start running in 2023, will be located at Sinop. This also has heavy involvement from overseas, especially Japan. The plant is a product of a joint venture between Areva and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries with Itochu and Gdf Suez as other project consortium members.

As Anne Starz, head of the Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Group at the IAEA points out, another advantage to the BOO model is learning and training. “Turkey has used a BOO model for the first time. There will be a very experienced operator involved from Russia, which operates NPPs already. The project is coming with financing and also a lot of experience. It’s one way of transferring experience from one country to another,” she says.

Source: Nuclear Energy Insider

Companies join forces to bring VVER to UK

Companies join forces to bring VVER to UK

Rosatom, Fortum and Rolls-Royce have agreed to work together to investigate building Russian-designed VVER pressurized water reactors in the UK. A memorandum of understanding signed by the UK and Russia will underpin the work.

 Fallon and Kiriyenko (Rosatom)_280
(Michael Fallon and Sergei Kiriyenko sign the memorandum (Image: Rosatom))According to Fortum, the trio of companies are to begin preparatory work towards a Generic Design Assessment (GDA) of a VVER-type power plant and site licensing. First commercial contracts have been signed by the parties.The agreement is supported by a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the nuclear power industry signed in Moscow by UK energy minister Michael Fallon and Rosatom head Sergei Kiriyenko. At the same time, Rolls-Royce signed a contract with Rosatom which will see the UK company undertake engineering and safety assessment work on Rosatom’s VVER technology ahead of its potential entry in the GDA process.

The GDA forms part of the approval process for new reactor projects in the UK, and allows regulators to assess the safety, security and environmental implications of new reactor designs, separately from applications to build them at specific sites. The UK’s first GDA process began in 2007, when four designs were submitted for initial consideration by UK regulators. Areva’s EPR became the first reactor design to complete the GDA process and receive a Design Acceptance Confirmation and Statement of Design Acceptability in December 2012. Earlier this year, a GDA was begun for Hitachi-GE’s Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (ABWR).

The companies bring together various experiences and expertise. Rosatom’s VVER reactors currently operate in 11 countries. Finnish nuclear utility Fortum brings to the table its experience of construction, operation and maintenance of VVERs at the Loviisa plant, which has operated for over 30 years, while Rolls-Royce contributes expertise as a provider of technology and services to the nuclear industry as well as knowledge of the UK licensing regime and its network of suppliers as a leading engineering company. Rosatom has been working closely with Rolls-Royce since the two companies signed a memorandum of understanding in 2011.

Rosatom has long expressed an interest in the potential new build market offered by the UK, where eight sites have been approved as suitable for new build. EDF has already earmarked two of them – Hinkley Point C and Sizewell C – as potential sites for EPRs, while ABWRs are proposed for Horizon’s sites at Oldbury and Wylfa.

Fortum executive vice president Matti Ruotsala said that the UK provided a “really interesting opportunity.” although the company emphasised that it has not yet made any investment decisions related to UK new build.

Fallon said that he welcomed the agreements signed by the three companies, adding that all reactor technologies adopted in the UK must meet the “stringent and independent” regulatory standards required in the UK and the EU.

Source: World Nuclear News