Construction begins of unit 6 in India’s Kudankulam nuclear power plant

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The construction of unit 6 of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP) in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, being built with the assistance of the Russian state atomic energy corporation Rosatom, was officially launched earlier this week with the first concreting in the foundation slab of the reactor building, Rosatom has announced.  

State-run Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) is the operator of the KNPP, units 1 and 2 of which, equipped with VVER-1000 type reactors of 1,000 MW capacity each, have been connected to the grid in 2013 and 2016, respectively.  

“In June of this year, the first concrete was laid at the power unit No. 5, and on December 20, the first concreting was launched at the power unit No. 6. The first two NPP power units are demonstrating sustainable operation at the nominal power level. The power units of the second stage are being constructed, namely, the works are underway at unit 3 to prepare for installation of the reactor pressure vessel”, a Rosatom statement said.  

The first concrete was poured into the foundation plate of the reactor building for the fifth unit of the KNPP on June 29, 2021, which marked the official commencement of the third phase of construction consisting of units 5 and 6. Phase 2 of the KNPP construction involving units 3 and 4, to be equipped similarly with the Russian-made VVER-1000 reactors of 1,000 MW capacity each, are currently at an advanced stage. 

“The third stage of the Kudankulam NPP will provide additional power capacity to ensure the industrial and commercial development of businesses in the Tamil Nadu region and the Republic of India as a whole; moreover, it will promote more confidence in our friendly countries’ prospects to expand peaceful nuclear cooperation by using the most advanced projects of high-capacity nuclear power units of Russian design”, said Rosatom arm ASE’s Vice-President for Projects in India and Prospective Projects, Andrey Lebedev. 

The statement also said that the equipment required for installation at units 5 and 6 is currently being supplied on a priority basis.  

As per an intergovernmental agreement, Rosatom will also help construct 6 more units in India at another location.  

The Kudankulam NPP units meet the latest International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safety requirements and the VVER-1000 reactors are equipped with state-of-the-art safety features.