Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Russian nuclear power plant could be first to use BN-1200 fast-breeder reactors

Last week, Russian nuclear power company Rosenergoatom announced that three nuclear power units utilizing fast-breeder BN-1200 reactors installed in Russia's Beloyarsk Nuclear Power Plant in the Urals by 2030.

Rosenergoatom CEO Yevgeny Romanov said on Tuesday that Beloyarsk's existing nuclear power units will be among the first to receive next-generation reactors to allow the reactors to operate under a closed nuclear fuel cycle--meaning Russia could be the first to use the technology, RIA Novosti reports.

Fast-breeder reactors, such as the BN-1200, operate at capacities of up to 1,200 megawatts (MW) and use a liquid metal heat-transfer agent as coolant. The technology significantly reduces the amount of radioactive waste and expands the range of fuel used by nuclear power plants.

In June, Rosenergoatom announced the launch of controller nuclear fission at its BN-800 breeder reactors. The BN-800 is considered to be an early prototype of the upcoming BN-1200 and is capable of an output of 880 MW, which plant engineers expect to achieve by October, according to RIA Novosti.