Kudankulam Nuclear power plant Current Affairs - 2019
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India has signed a joint statement with Russia takeover full operational control of Unit 1 of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP). It formally marks the full transition.
The agreement was signed between representatives of Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) and the ASE Group of Companies, a subsidiary of ROSATOM State Atomic Energy Corporation of Russia.
- With the deal, the Russian and Indian sides have confirmed fulfilment of all warranty terms and obligations of the contractor (ASE Group of Companies) for the construction of Unit 1.
- The warranty period run showed reliable and safe operation of Unit 1. Thus, the NPCIL has confirmed that ASE Group of Companies, which is a general contractor, has fulfilled all its tasks in full and accurately.
- The commercial operation and the warranty period of Unit 1 of KKNPP had started in December 2014. The warranty was typically for one year, which ended in December 2015.
- However, the final takeover agreement was delayed to ensure the reliability of the plant and equipment as Unit I was the first of a series of six reactors.
- Earlier, in March 2017, both countries had signed joint protocol on provisional acceptance of Unit 2 of the plant, which marked the start of its commercial operation.
About Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP)
- KKNPP is the single largest nuclear power station in India. It is situated in Koodankulam in the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu.
- It is scheduled to have six VVER-1000 reactors with an installed capacity of 6,000 MW of electricity. It has been built in collaboration with Atomstroyexport, the Russian state company and NPCIL.
- Unit 1 of the plant was synchronised with the southern power grid in October 2013 and is generating electricity to its warranted limit of 1000 MW.
- Unit 2 with capacity 1,000 MW had achieved first criticality in July 2016. It was grid-connected in August 2016 and its commercial operation started in October 2016.
- The ground-breaking ceremony for construction of units 3 & 4 was performed in February 2016. The power generated from the plant will provide electricity to Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Kerala and Karnataka.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin dedicated the first unit of the ambitious Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP) in Tamil Nadu to the nation.
KKNPP was dedicated by the leaders through video conferencing from Delhi and Moscow. It has India’s single largest nuclear generation unit with capacity of 1000 megawatt (MW)
- The KKNPP is located in Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu, around 650 km from Chennai. It is built under India-Russian Nuclear agreement of 1988.
- KKNPP is India’s nuclear power plant to use imported PWR technology. It has VVER (Water-Water Energetic Reactor) type light water reactors.
- The reactors are built by the NPCIL (Nuclear Power Corporation of India) and Russia’s Atomstroyexport Company, a subsidiary of Rosatom.
- The Unit I of the KKNPP is already in service since December 2014 and was connected to the southern grid in October 2013.
- The first unit till now more than 10,800 million units of power and the plant had attained criticality in July 2013
- The Unit II (1000 MW capactity) of the KKNPP had achieved criticality in July 2016 will begin power production by end of August 2016.
- Besides, preliminary works are also going on for the construction of third and fourth reactors with Russian technical expertise.
- KKNPP has enhanced safety features which were incorporated in the water cooled, water moderated reactor complex after the Fukushima nuclear incident in Japan.
India-Russian Nuclear agreement of 1988: It was signed between the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Soviet leader Mikahil Gorbachev in November 1988. The agreement was revived in 1998 with Russia and construction works started in March 2002 due to the political and economic upheaval in Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
Note: The allocation power generated from KKNPP-I & II (2000 MW) include Tamil Nadu (925 MW), Karnataka (442 MW), Kerala (266 MW), Puducherry (67 MW). While 300 MW remains unallocated.