The Department of Nuclear and Radiation Safety of the Ministry for Emergency Situations of the Republic of Belarus (Gosatomnadzor) has issued a permit for loading fresh nuclear fuel into the reactor of the Belarusian NPP Unit 1. Rosatom Engineering Division is the general designer and general contractor of the NPP.
In accordance with the laws of the Republic of Belarus, Gosatomnadzor experts carried out a targeted inspection, which confirmed readiness of technological systems, equipment, personnel of the nuclear power unit and operational documentation for the beginning of the physical start-up phase.
In the coming days, the first of 163 fuel assemblies will be loaded into the reactor of Unit 1, where after the engineers will proceed to assemble the reactor plant.
Physical start-up is an important stage in the commissioning process of a nuclear power unit, during which fuel is loaded into the reactor, the chain reaction starts with reaching the minimum controllable level (1% of the capacity) and relevant tests are performed. From that moment on, the reactor acquires the status of a nuclear power facility. The main objective of this stage is to verify the reliability and safety of the power unit at its design parameters and execute the power start-up afterwards.
The two-unit Belarusian NPP with a total power capacity of 2,400 MW is being constructed in the Belarusian town of Ostrovets. Being the country’s first NPP, it is based on a Russian Gen 3+ design that fully complies with the international standards and the IAEA safety recommendations.