Covid-19 had no adverse impact on the progress of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant
Despite country wide lockdown due to Covid-19 and halt of normal life movement, it could not create any hindrance at the progress of Rooppur Nuclear Power Project (RNPP). The work on the project ran as usual according to schedule.
On October 1, JSC "AEM-technology", a part of the Russian State Atomiс Energy Corporation Rosatom, shipped the last of the four steam generators for Rooppur NPP, the country’s first under construction nuclear power project. The first item was dispatched on August 20, together with the Reactor Pressure Vessel. Two more steam generators were shipped in September.
Thus, for Unit No.1 of Rooppur NPP, the whole set of main components such VVER-1200 reactor pressure vessel, four steam generators and polar crane, was shipped from the plant site - the Volgodonsk branch of JSC “AEM-technology” to Bangladesh. It will be delivered to the construction site by the end of this year through cargo terminal at Padma river port, which has recently become fully operational.
According to the plan, the second reactor is scheduled to be shipped next March. It is expected that manufacturing, including in-vessel devices, will be finished and all will be shipped to Bangladesh in late April 2021.
Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, the delivery of crucial equipment has not been affected. There are no schedule delays. Rosatom has taken all necessary measures and precautions to minimize the negative impact of COVID-19 crisis on its supply chain to fulfill our contractual commitments with Bangladesh and others. To date, all equipment was successfully shipped according to the plan and all contractual obligations to the Bangladeshi customer were fulfilled.
Our relationship with the customer was of total open-door policy: our facilities and the equipment we produce were available without any reservation at any time of day or night, at all control stages. Our translators were always helping our partners from Bangladesh. Our translators should be commended – they are our technical specialists; they understand both the technology and the production stages. In other words, our interpreters were not merely translating, they were explaining in full detail. Thus we managed our working relationship with the customer representatives. The customer has been satisfied with the work performed.
We have ensured complete transparency in the process and have co-operated closely with Bangladesh on construction and delivery of crucial equipment. For two years our customer was present here all the time. And this arrangement can be applied to any project, regardless of the customer. It is the same for Turkey. On September 25 we shipped the Reactor Pressure Vessel for the "Akkuyu" Unit No. 1, and in late August four Steam Generators left our plant for the "Akkuyu"
JSC "AEM-technology" is the only enterprise in Russia that produces a complete set of nuclear steam supply system (NSSS) for NPPs.
Reactor plant manufacturing is a unique high-tech competence that only a few countries in the world possess. Its production cycle is 653 days and its weight is 330 tons. It takes roughly 2 years to manufacture the reactor from receiving the billets to shipment date. First, we mechanically process the billets, then we send them into various workshops, and every workshop is responsible for a certain processing stage. After mechanical treatment, the billets are sent for smelting and heat treatment, and for control, of course. For example, this pressure vessel includes 267 check points, i.e. the works were terminated for 267 times and our foreign customer was invited to check and approve the vessel at the specific manufacturing stage. Once all the reactor components are ready, they are moved to a certain bay and the assembling begins – all joints are docked and welded. After that, a reactor becomes the reactor.
As for the steam generator, it belongs to the products of the first class of safety. The diameter is more than 4 meters, the length of the apparatus is about 14 meters. The weight of the equipment is 340 tons. The vessel of the steam generator is a horizontal cylindrical vessel with two elliptical heads, in the middle part of which there are headers for supplying and removing hot coolant. The equipment of one power unit includes four steam generators. In the lower part of the steam generator vessel there is a heat exchange surface, which consists of 11,000 stainless tubes with a total length of about 130 km.
At present JSC "AEM-technology" manufactures sets of steam generators for 7 nuclear power units and reactor facilities for three nuclear power plants located in Bangladesh, Turkey and Russia. To date the enterprise is manufacturing five reactor facilities and, in total, 28 steam generators. This is a unique situation, since this is the first time such an amount of basic equipment is in production at the same time.
For two power units of a nuclear power plant in Bangladesh, JSC “AEM-technology” will manufacture over 50 types of equipment: reactor vessels, upper unit, core barrel, core baffle, protective tube unit, sets of steam generators, main circulation pipelines, main circulation pumps and other equipment. In total for 2020 - 2021 over 4,000 tons of unique equipment will be manufactured and shipped.
RovshanAbbasov, Director General of the Volgodonsk branch of JSC “AEM-technology” (a part of the machine-building division of Rosatom – “Atomenergomash”