China starts constructing third-generation nuclear reactors

April 20th, 2009 - 2:25 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Apr 20 (ANI): China has started the construction of its first third-generation pressurized water reactors using AP 1000 technologies developed by US-based Westinghouse.

The reactors, located in Sanmen of east China’s Zhejiang Province, will also be the first in the world using such technologies.

The Sanmen Nuclear Power Plant will be built in three phases, with an investment of more than 5.88 billion dollars injected in the first phase, Xinhua reported.

The first phase project will include two units each with a generating capacity of 1.25 million kw. The first generating unit will be put into operation in 2013, and the second, in 2014. The plant will eventually have six such units.

“It is the biggest energy cooperation project between China and the United States,” said Zhang Guobao, Vice Minister in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission and also head of the National Energy Administration.

“It will contribute to the human kind’s peaceful use of nuclear power,” he said.

China launched bidding in 2003 for its nuclear power stations of the third generation. Foreign companies including Westinghouse, France’s Areva and Russia’s AtomStroyExport are major bidders.

Westinghouse became the winner after China signed a memo with the United States on the introduction and transfer of third-generation nuclear power technologies in December 2006. (ANI)

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