The reactor pressure vessel and the core catcher for Kudankulam unit 4 under construction in India have been loaded on to a cargo ship in the port of Saint Petersburg, Russia. The shipment of equipment - 9000 cubic metres in total - is the thirteenth for unit 4, Rosatom said, on a route spanning 15,000 kilometres.

The core catcher being lifted into place for Kudankulam unit 3 (Image: ASE)

Units 3 and 4 are AES-92 design VVER-1000 units under construction as the second phase of the Kudankulam plant in Tamil Nadu. Kudankulam 1 and 2, both VVER-1000 units, have been in operation since 2014 and 2017, respectively. A third phase using the AES-92 design is also planned.

"Despite the objective difficulties arising from the increased load at the port due to the approaching end of the year, we've fulfilled our obligations to the customer and shipped the necessary equipment," Rosatom's first deputy director for projects in India, Alexander Kvasha, said.

Rosatom subsidiary and general contractor for the Kudankulam project, AtomStroyExport, announced earlier this month that the core catcher for unit 3 had been installed.

A core catcher - also referred to as a core melt localisation device, or core trap - is designed to catch the molten core of a reactor in the unlikely event of a meltdown, preventing it from escaping the containment building.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News

Date: Tuesday, 24 December 2019
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