30 Apr 2020 23:52

Rostov NPP planning to produce medical oxygen

ROSTOV-ON-DON. April 30 (Interfax) - The Rostov Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) plans to start producing medical oxygen to satisfy a demand for it amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"The Rostov Nuclear Power Plant filed a bid on April 23 for a license to produce medical oxygen. We have taken some steps together with the Industry and Trade Ministry for the time for considering the bid to be reduced," Rostov Regional Industry and Energy Minister Igor Sorokin said at a regional government meeting.

The Rostov NPP's information and public relations department confirmed this information to Interfax. The proposal on supplying medical institutions with oxygen came from the Volgodonsk administration.

"We have a chemical facility producing certain gases, including oxygen, for the plant's needs. It is capable of producing up to 40 cubic meters of compressed oxygen an hour. This production has to be licensed so that it could be used in medicine," it said.

The Volgodonsk administration refrained from specifying how much oxygen might be needed. "We cannot anticipate how many patients could be admitted to our mono-hospital daily. We have people brought here from rural areas, and it is the regional operative response headquarters and the Health Ministry that determine where patients have to be directed. For our devices to be supplied with oxygen complying with medical standards, we made this request with the NPP, and they accommodated us. We have some supply of oxygen available to this hospital. But we are acting preemptively so as to have some reserves," an administration spokesperson told Interfax.

The Rostov NPP is located near the Tsimlyansk Water Reservoir 13.5 kilometers away from Volgodonsk. The plant operates four 1,000 MW VVER-1000 reactors. Power unit 1 started commercial operations in 2001, unit 2 in 2010, unit 3 in 2015, and unit 4 in September 2018.