What do we know for sure? We know, for sure, that the costs of the material for an AP-1000 is is less than 1.4 billion dollars. How do we know that? Because this is what the Chinese are saying it is going to cost to built their AP-1000s, take or add $100 million or so. This means that Westinghouse is charging, at most, about $1000/kW installed components. Interesting, yes? We also can assume that Westinghouse is charging the Chinese the same as they are the dozen or more new builds submitted to the US NRC.
Early this year I met with a EDF nuclear physicist, far-left member of their union at his nuclear plant in southern France and ask him about this. He said at Flamesville, they are already developing new concrete techniques (some, believe or not ,dervived from French wine barrel making techniques!) to speed up and help in building the plant. They expect, still, that the plant will be over budget but not nearly as much as the Finnish version. People at EDF, both in management and in the unions are very optimistic.
$26 billion is an aggregate number that includes two reactors, turbines, transmission and distribution infrastructure (power lines or T&D), plant infrastructure, and nuclear fuel for 60 years as well as decommissioning costs. [Every cost for pre-build, build, infrastructure upgrades, 60 years of operation and also decommissioning some decades after] One of The most important number in the whole controversy has gone largely without notice and that is the delivered cost of electricity from the plants is in the range of five cents per kilowatt hour.
South Korea could become the fourth country to develop plans to export reactors to India, after Russia, France and the USA. All these plans have come in a rush after a virtual nuclear trade embargo against India was dismantled last year.
Kepco’s APR-1400 is the technology to be studied, a pressurized water reactor (PWR) developed from Westinghouse units imported in the 1970s. That deal included an element of knowledge transfer and Korean firms have since mastered the design and manufacture of every single component of the APR1400
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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