11 May 2022 16:33

Energy Ministry confirms plans to commission Belarusian NPP's second power unit before yearend

MINSK. May 11 (Interfax) - The second power unit of the Belarusian Nuclear Power Plant should be put into service this year, Belarusian Deputy Energy Minister Mikhail Mikhadyuk said.

"An array of startup operations are being carried out [at the second unit]. All works are being carried out according to a special program. We are completing all tests prescribed by programs, work is going as planned. There are plans to include the unit in work this year," Mikhadyuk was quoted by the press service for the Energy Ministry as saying.

The second unit reactor's physical startup phase began in December 2021 when nuclear fuel was loaded into it and will be completed after the start of a chain reaction in the reactor. This will be followed by the power startup, during which the unit will be connected to the energy system. The unit will be commissioned after that following the Department for Nuclear and Radiation Safety (Gosatomnadzor) issuing the relevant license.

Belarus is completing the construction of the NPP near the town of Ostrovets in the Grodno region with Russian VVER-1200 reactors. It will consist of two power units with a capacity of 1.2 GW each. JSC ASE, Rosatom's engineering division, is the general contractor for the construction of the NPP.

The first power unit was commissioned on June 10, 2021.

Belarusian Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko said earlier that the second unit would be commissioned by the summer of 2022. The Belarusian authorities later said that commissioning would take place by the end of 2022.