September 29, 2015

First AP1000 nuclear reactor should be operating Sept 2016 and the first CAP1400 should start construction this year

China's first AP1000 reactor, Sanmen 1, is expected to begin commercial operation in September 2016, while governmental permission is expected for work to start on the first Chinese-designed CAP1400 by the end of this year

Sanmen 1, in Zhejiang province, is one of four Westinghouse-designed AP1000s currently under construction in China. Work officially began on the unit when the first concrete was poured in March 2009, with a second unit at Sanmen beginning construction in December the same year. Work began on two units at Haiyang in Shandong province in September 2009 and June 2010, respectively.

Wang said that validation and verification work on SNPTC's CAP1400 design, which is based on the AP1000, is making good progress. Many enhancements have been incorporated to further improve the reactor's passive safety features to incorporate lessons learned from the Fukushima accident, including new venting and filtering systems to preserve the integrity of the containment under severe accident conditions. China's National Nuclear Safety Administration (NNSA) has completed its safety review of the design.

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