1. World Nuclear News – Engineers bringing a new reactor into service at the Kalinin nuclear power plant have successfully completed most of their tests. The unit is slated for commercial operation in September. The plant’s chief engineer, Igor Bogomolov, said the new reactor unit had “achieved an excellent result.” It may now be operated at 50% power for a test period of 72 hours. If all goes well a full-power test period would follow with the intention of putting the unit into commercial operation in September.
The final procedures of this program are required before the unit can be run at its full rated thermal power of 3200 MW, producing 1000 MW of electricity for the grid. They are conducted at the minimum power level and verify the operation of control and protection systems.
2. World Nuclear News – The Canadian government has accepted the environmental assessment report for the possible construction of new nuclear capacity at Darlington, clearing the way for the issuance of a site preparation licence.
According to the CNSC’s(Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission) own timeline for the project, it anticipates a construction licence application from OPG this year, which would see a decision around 2014. After that, OPG (Ontario Power Generation) would need to apply for an operating licence for the postulated plant.
OPG currently operates four 881 MWe Candu units at the Darlington site. It began the approvals process for up to four nuclear units totalling up to 4800 MWe of capacity in 2006. No decision has yet been made on the final reactor design to be used at the site, and the environmental impact statement was prepared taking three possible designs – the ACR 1000 Candu reactor, Areva’s EPR and Westinghouse’s AP 1000 – into consideration.