MINSK, 13 March (BelTA) – The construction of the Belarusian nuclear power plant is on the home stretch, Belarusian Energy Minister Viktor Karankevich said on the air of the Belarus 1 TV channel on 12 March, BelTA has learned.
Plans are in place to launch the second unit by the end of this year. Speaking about the key tasks, the minister highlighted safety as the primary focus. "All the works and activities that need to be carried out should verify both the safety and reliability of all equipment and technological systems," he emphasized.
"We are currently preparing for starting a controlled chain reaction and bringing the reactor to the minimum controlled capacity. This work is carried out within the framework of the ‘physical start-up' stage. Then the reactor core will undergo neutron physics tests to verify its compliance with design parameters," Viktor Karankevich said.
According to him, the successful implementation of these works and studies will allow moving on to the next stage on the second unit. "This is the start-up stage which implies bringing the reactor from 1% to 50% of its capacity. When at 40% the turbogenerator will be linked up to the grid and produce the first kilowatt-hours to the grid," the minister said.
Then the reactor will be brought up to the nominal capacity. "This will mark the trial operation stage. We will study various modes of operation of both the reactor and the turbogenerator up to the complete shutdown of the turbogenerator," Viktor Karankevich explained.
Among the priority tasks, the minister also called the verification of the work of both the main and auxiliary equipment in compliance with all design parameters.
"At the end of all this work, we will conduct comprehensive tests and trials of every nuclear installation within 15 days. This work will be carried out before the second unit and the plant as a whole are put into operation," the minister said.