The loading of nuclear fuel into the first unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant (BelNPP) will begin on 7 August, the press service of the Ministry of Energy reports.
A total of 163 fuel rod arrays will be inserted into the reactor in August. After that, the main circulation pumps will be turned on to heat the primary circuit of the reactor plant to the design parameters.
Then the reactor will be brought to a minimum controlled level (the beginning of a chain reaction) with the necessary tests and a gradual increase of the power level of the reactor unit.
The BelNPP featuring two VVER-1200 reactors with the total output capacity of 2,400MW is being built near Ostrovets, Grodno Oblast.
The launch of the first power-generating unit was scheduled for January 2020. Earlier it was planned that the first BelNPP unit will be set into operation in 2018. However, after the BelNPP reactor vessel incident, it was postponed.
BelNPP is being built 18 km away from Ostrovets and 50 km away from the Lithuanian capital Vilnius. Such location has caused numerous critical statements and even emergency drills at the neighbouring state.
The engineering division of the Russian state nuclear industry corporation Rosatom is the general contractor.
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