Russia assists China develop nuclear power industry

Pre-commissioning works, carried out with Russia’s technical assistance, have reached their finishing stage at the first power unit of the Tianwan Atomic Energy Plant near the Chinese city of Lianyungang. In the words of Rumyantsev, “the work is being carried out according to the schedule”. Its running-in has been completed and by the end of the year, the reactor is expected to become operational. The second power unit will be launched in 2005.

Rumyantsev acknowledged that some problems arose during the final stages of the launch of the plant’s first block. He said that glitches arose in one reactor’s equipment but hopes to eliminate those glitches within the next two months. Regarding another reactor close to Beijing, Rumyantsev told Interfax on August 12, “Some parts of the equipment, however, have started to malfunction, but we know how to fix them.”

The Russian side also expects to receive permission on the second phase construction of the third and the fourth units of the Tianwan atomic power plant. Among other significant aspects of bilateral energy cooperation Rumyantsev mentioned the construction of a commercial-development fast neutron reactor. In his words, China has also expressed interest in a Russian project for the creation of a floating atomic power plant. Russia’s state nuclear industry engineering and manufacturing company TVEL plans to start supplying nuclear fuel for the second reactor of the Tianwan plant late this year. Early this year, TVEL started to supply the fuel for the first reactor of the plant, according to the contract signed in 1997, PRIME-TASS reported.