According to a Rosatom statement, Limarenko said: "Extremely important documents have been signed that have been the focus of intensive joint work in recent months." He added: "All the formalities have been carried out now in order to finally launch the project to construct two new power units at Kudankulam using Russian technologies." The project has now entered the "practical phase", he added.
Kudankulam, in Tamil Nadu, is home to two VVER-1000s supplied by the ASE Group, which is Rosatom's engineering subsidiary and includes Atomstroyexport and Atomenergoproekt.
Kudankulam 1 entered commercial operation in December 2014, while in April this year NPCIL signed an agreement provisionally accepting Kudankulam unit 2 from its Russian suppliers and thus marking the unit's entry into commercial operation. Two further VVER-1000 units - Kudankulam 3 and 4 - are to be built at the site in the second construction phase. Pouring of first concrete for units 3 and 4 is planned for the end of June, Rosatom said yesterday.
Cooperation between India and Russia to build the Kudankulam plant has its origins in an inter-governmental agreement signed in 1988 by the then Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachov. First concrete for unit 1 was poured in March 2002, with that for unit 2 following four months later. The units were originally scheduled to begin commercial operation in December 2007 and December 2008 respectively.
Although unit 1 was completed in March 2011, its commissioning was delayed due to protests and legal action following the accident at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi plant the same month. Plant owner Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited announced in July 2013 that the unit had achieved first criticality. It was connected to the grid in October that year. Unit 2 - India's 22nd nuclear power reactor - achieved first criticality in July last year.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News