18.11.2020  The Kursk NPP Information and Public Relations Department

“Dry” reactor shielding installed at power unit No. 2 of Kursk NPP-2

Biological (“dry”) reactor shielding was installed in the reactor shaft of the second NPU. This is one of the primary elements in the NPP protection system.

“Dry” shielding should minimize the exposure of the concrete reactor shaft to radioactivity and heat radiation. It also ensures stable operation of the ionization chambers, which are measurement channels necessary to control the change in reactor power.

"Dry" shielding surrounds the reactor vessel and is a thick-walled cylindrical steel structure with a diameter that exceeds 6 meters and a weight of over 130 tons. The inter-shell space of the cylinder is filled with serpentinite concrete, which is resistant to high temperatures: It can withstand up to 500°C”, - Chief Engineer at Kursk NPP-2 Alexey Volnov explained.

The installation was preceded by lengthy preparation. The cavities of the "dry" shielding were filled with serpentinite concrete and heat treated. The concrete was heated to a temperature of 250 degrees and held (dried) for 19 days. As a result, it acquired the necessary properties to effectively attenuate neutron fluxes outside the reactor shaft.

Installation of the "dry" shielding was carried out with a DEMAG crane within two hours. The main difficulty for the builders was to maintain a 2 mm tolerance, but they managed this task with pinpoint accuracy.

The next stage of work at the power unit will be the installation of the guide plate.

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