Leningrad NPP: power start-up underway at new power unit 6

13th October 2020, Sosnovy Bor, Russia. The power start-up at the Leningrad NPP Unit 6, containing ROSATOM’s flagship Generation III+ VVER-1200 reactor, has begun following the green light from Russia’s watchdog Rostekhnadzor.

Power start-up comprises a complex series of stages over the course of which reactor’s power is gradually increased from 1% to 35-40%. That power level generates sufficient energy to turn on the turbogenerator, which, when connected to the grid, then begins producing electricity – a milestone scheduled for this autumn.

Leningrad NPP’s Director Vladimir Pereguda said: “We are three steps away from commissioning yet another state-of-the-art Russian unit – in the next six months, the unit should go through power start-up, trial operation and comprehensive tests. During these tests, while gradually increasing its power level, we will test the unit’s technological durability and safety and its security systems. In the beginning of 2021, the new sixth power unit will enter the capacity market and start supplying consumers with almost 28 million Kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity daily.”

The commissioning of Leningrad NPP Unit 6 began on 19 July 2020, when the first assembly with fresh nuclear fuel was loaded into the reactor core prompting the unit’s physical launch. During physical start-up, nuclear scientists successfully brought the reactor to a power level of about 1% and confirmed that the unit’s physical characteristics comply with those stipulated in its design. The scientists also evaluated the efficiency and reliability of the reactor’s security systems and safety interlocks.

The Unit 6 is expected to enter commercial operation in 2021. It will replace Leningrad NPP Unit 2 equipped with RBMK-1000 reactor, which has successfully operated for 45 years.

Notes to the editor:

About Rosatom
Rosatom is the only company in the world that has the resources and competencies to offer energy solutions across the nuclear supply chain. It possesses a wide range of assets, including those in design, construction, and operation of nuclear power stations, uranium mining, conversion and enrichment, supply of nuclear fuel, decommissioning, spent fuel storage and transportation and safe nuclear waste disposal. Rosatom is also engaged in the production of equipment and isotope products for the needs of nuclear medicine, scientific research, and materials science, as well as capacities for the production of digital and various nuclear and non-nuclear innovative products. The company’s strategy is to develop low-carbon power generation projects, including in the field of wind generation. Today, Rosatom brings together over 300 enterprises and organisations and over 250,000 employees.
About VVER-1200

The VVER-1200 is the flagship of Rosatom’s Generation III+ PWR-type reactor and the world’s only Generation III+ design in serial construction. Currently, there are three VVER-1200-equipped power units successfully operating in Russia. 

The innovative VVER-1200 reactor-equipped Generation III+ power unit has a number of advantages when compared to previous generation reactors (i.e. the VVER-1000): it is 20% more powerful, the number of personnel required to operate it has decreased by 30-40%, and its lifetime has doubled to 60 years with the possibility of a 20-year extension.

The following countries have chosen to adopt this technology: Finland, Hungary, China, Bangladesh, Turkey, Belarus and others. Rosatom’s international order book currently comprises 36 power unit projects at various stages of implementation in 12 countries.

The 75th anniversary of the Russian nuclear industry
The year 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of Russia’s nuclear industry. Russia has always been a pioneer in the peaceful use of atomic energy. In 1954, Russian scientists launched the first nuclear power station and, today, Rosatom already has three units equipped with the latest III+ generation reactors. Over three quarters of a century,  nuclear units have appeared in many countries thanks to Russia’s nuclear industry, and, today, Rosatom is the leader in terms of the size of its foreign portfolio. Rosatom has the world’s only nuclear icebreaker fleet and the most powerful fast neutron reactor; it also contributes to digitalisation and nuclear medicine.

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