Delegation from three partner countries of Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom – Bangladesh, Nigeria and Zambia – visited the Novovoronezh nuclear power plant (NPP) last week. Energy experts and journalists toured the state-of-the-art nuclear facilities in town of Novovoronezh and region capital Voronezh. Both cities are located in Central Russia, approximately 500 km to the South-East of Moscow.
The purpose of the visit was to acquaint the delegation with the successful operation of state-of-the-art generation III+ VVER technology implemented at the Unit 6 of the Novovoronezh NPP (or Unit 1 of Novovoronezh NPP-2). Bangladesh has recently started construction Rooppur NPP, its first NPP based on the same design and Nigeria and Zambia are currently preparing to develop their programs of using Russian nuclear technologies for peaceful purposes.
The guests first visited the Novovoronezh NPP training center and studied the full-scale simulator – an exact copy of the unit control room of the new VVER power units used for training NPP personnel. This training center is used as the base for training employees of Rosatom and nuclear power plants of Rosatom partner countries.
Next stop was observation deck of Novovoronezh NPP, followed by tour of Unit 6 control room, turbine hall and the grounds of the NPP. This unit is the third of latest generation technology – Generation III+ VVER –built in Russia in past years. The same technology is offered to Rosatom clients in partner countries. Dmitry Shornikov, CEO of Rosatom Central and Southern Africa, noted: “It is vitally important to offer tried and tested technology as it guarantees that we are able to deliver the safest, most technically advanced and high-performance solutions to our clients abroad”. Currently, Rosatom is constructing the biggest number of largescale nuclear power projects abroad, namely in Bangladesh, Belarus, China, India, Hungary, Finland and Turkey, which constitute 36 new build power units in total.
The tour ended with visiting Novovoronezh social and sports facilities built as part of Novovoronezh NPP social program and the Information center for nuclear energy in Voronezh. Information center operates free of charge for visitors and helps people understand potential on nuclear and its basics. The center has a small cinema that demonstrates interactive video programs in both Russian and English, interactive model of nuclear power station, online monitor that demonstrates radiation level in the region model, radiometers and many other educational equipment.
“Our country has no experience using nuclear energy, but now with the help of Russia we are building Rooppur nuclear power plant”, – said Ahmed Kabir, special correspondent of Bangladeshi newspaper Daily Star. – “I questioned safety of nuclear power plants beforehand, but after visiting Novovoronezh NPP, I am convinced that the safety here is at the highest level. I am sure that the development of nuclear energy will not have a negative impact on the population or on nature”.
“The Novovoronezh nuclear power plant is an enormous industrial facility. And any country that wants to develop its industries needs such facilities”, – noted Olatunde Dodondava, the senior correspondent of the Niregiran newspaper The Tribune. – “I had lots of questions when I went on this tour, but NPP employees have prepared for us a very detailed presentation on the safety of nuclear power plants, its active and passive safety systems. I was particularly impressed with the core catcher technology for the active zone of the reactor. My idea of nuclear power has changed at once and all my fears were removed. Russia and Nigeria have signed an agreement to build a Centre for nuclear science and technology in our country. I hope that I and my fellow journalists will be able to tell the people of Nigeria that the nuclear power plant is a clean and safe technology”.
ROSATOM is the only company in the world to offer integrated clean energy solutions across the nuclear supply chain and beyond, including design, construction and operation of nuclear power stations, uranium mining, conversion and enrichment, supply of nuclear fuel, decommissioning, spent fuel storage and transportation and safe nuclear waste disposal. With 70 years’ continuous experience, the company is the world leader in high-performance solutions for all kinds of nuclear power plants. It is also working in the segments of wind generation, nuclear medicine, energy storage and other.
Headquartered in Moscow, the company brings together over 300 enterprises and organizations and over 250,000 employees. Globally, the company has the second biggest uranium reserves, has more than a third of the world’s enrichment market, and is the world's biggest builder of the latest generation nuclear power stations and US$133 billion 10-years export order book.
About VVER technology
The VVER-1200 is the flagship of ROSATOM’s Generation III+ PWR-type reactor and the world’s only Generation III+ design in series construction. The innovative Generation III+ power unit, equipped with the VVER-1200 reactor, has a number of economic and safety advantages when compared to the previous generation (VVER-1000): it is 20% more powerful; the amount of personnel operating the reactor has decreased to between 30 and 40%; and the lifetime of the reactor has doubled to 60 years, with the possibility of lasting an additional 20 years.
Unit No. 2 at the Novovoronezh-2 NPP is going to be the third in the series following unit No. 1 at the same NPP, launched in 2016, and unit No. 1 at the Leningrad-2 NPP, launched in 2017.