Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project Delayed

Chennai, April 4 (IANS) The delay in the arrival of components for the upcoming 2,000 MW nuclear reactor at Kudankulam in Tamil Nadu has led to the postponement of the commissioning of the first unit of the project by a few months, an official said.

Service providers for the project like the Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) are clueless about the possible date for the arrival of the components.

The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) is building two 1,000 MW light water nuclear reactors in Kudankulam, about 600 km from here, in Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu with Russians supplying all the components of the plant, including the nuts and bolts.

"Nearly 30 percent components on the piping side are yet to come from Russia, as far as our portion of the contract is concerned. We are not informed as to when they would arrive," BHEL executive director P.R. Shriram told reporters Saturday.

The target for the commissioning of the unit has been delayed frequently. As per the original plan, the first unit was to commence in December 2007. Then the date was fixed for mid-2010. And now the revised date is September this year.

Indian power equipment major BHEL has been contracted to erect the turbine generator supplied by Russia.

"BHEL has put the first unit's turbine generator on barring gear and is ready to run. The second unit's turbine generator will be put on barring gear in three months' time," Shriram said.

According to NPCIL, 95 percent of the physical work has been completed for the first nuclear reactor and for the second unit it is 87.3 percent.

NPCIL and Russia's Atomstroy Export formally inked a deal for building two more civil nuclear reactors of 1,000 MW each at Kudankulam last month.

A total of 12 Russian nuclear power reactors are expected to come up in India of which six would be built between 2012 and 2017.


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