Westinghouse Electric Company has completed testing that validates the integrity of the containment vessel of the Sanmen 1 AP1000, under construction in China's Zhejiang Province.

The two-part testing began on 14 October and concluded on 6 November. In the first test - the Structural Integrity Test (SIT) - the containment vessel was pressurized and monitored to demonstrate that its design and construction meet all applicable industry codes and standards at 110 percent of design pressure. In the second test, the containment vessel was pressurized to design pressure and the Integrated Leak Rate Test (ILRT) was performed to demonstrate the containment vessel's ability to prevent the release of fission products in the event of an emergency.

"The containment vessel pressure testing is another significant milestone in the delivery of the world's first AP1000 nuclear power plant," said Haydn Doughty, Westinghouse site director at Sanmen. "The testing confirms the integrity of the containment vessel structure and keeps Westinghouse and our delivery partners on a clear path to project completion."

Westinghouse said that final reports on the testing are in process and will be issued by the end of the year.

First two RCP pumps for China

Meanwhile, US-based Curtiss-Wright Corporation has completed the shipment of the first pair of AP1000 reactor coolant pumps (RCPs) for unit 1 of China's Sanmen nuclear power plant. The RCPs are expected to be onsite in December and the company expects to complete production and shipment of the remaining two RCPs for Sanmen 1 by the end of the year.

Under earlier contracts received in 2007 and 2008 for plant sites in China and the USA, Curtiss-Wright is producing a total of 32 RCPs for four AP1000 nuclear plants currently under construction, including Sanmen and China's Haiyang nuclear plant in Shandong Province, as well as for two US plants - Southern Nuclear's Vogtle site in Georgia; and SCANA's VC Summer site in South Carolina. Shipment the RCPs, which began this month, is expected to continue until 2017.

In October, Curtiss-Wright announced that it had successfully completed extensive China regulator reviews and detailed post-test inspections. As a result, the review confirmed that the RCP performed as required during the final performance testing and reached full qualification. The RCP performance met the design requirements which are necessary to support safe and reliable AP1000 plant operation. Curtiss-Wright manufactures the RCPs at its Electro-Mechanical Division (EMD) facility in Cheswick, Pennsylvania (USA).

Date: Tuesday, 24 November 2015
Original article: neimagazine.com/news/newsprogress-for-sanmen-1-4735247