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Belarusian unit brought to 100% capacity

Unit 1 of the nuclear power plant under construction in Belarus reached 100% of its capacity on 12 January, Russia’s Rosatom said yesterday. The reactor, near Ostrovets in the Grodno region of Belarus, is of the AES-2006 design, which is the latest version of the VVER-1200 and the first of its kind built outside Russia.

“Reaching the 100% capacity level is the main event in the pilot industrial operation phase of any nuclear power unit,” Vitaly Polyanin, director of the Belarusian NPP project at Rosatom, said. “After confirming that the parameters and performance of the systems and equipment comply with the design requirements, the unit will be put into industrial operation.”

Start-up operations at unit 1 began on 7 August 2020, when the first fuel assemblies were loaded into the reactor’s core. On 11 October, the unit was brought to the minimum controlled power level (less than 1% of the nominal capacity). On 3 November, it was connected to the grid for the first time. On 22 December,  it began pilot industrial operation.

Once all tests have been completed, the reactor will be approved for commercial operation by the Belarusian government committee responsible for nuclear energy.

There are three VVER-1200 units in operation in Russia – Novovoronezh II units 1 and 2, and Leningrad II unit 1.

Source: World Nuclear News