Achieving carbon neutrality with nuclear technology
World’s first Hualong One reactor put into commercial operation
The Unit 5 of China’s Fuqing Nuclear Power Plant is the world’s first Demonstration project to adopt China’s indigenous Generation III nuclear power technology Hualong One, also known as HPR1000. It was put into commercial operation on January 30 ( 2021) according to an announcement from China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC).
The success marks a milestone for the development of China’s nuclear power. China becomes the fourth country to master its indigenous Generation III nuclear power technology following the US, France and Russia. CNNC’s Generation III nuclear power technology, Hualong One (with complete independent intellectual property rights), was developed and designed based on more than 30 years of nuclear power research, design, manufacturing, construction and operation experiences.
With a design life of 60 years, the Hualong One reactor adopts a 177-reactor core design that reqires refueling the fuel only every 18 months. It innovatively uses a combination of “active and passive” safety systems and a double-shell containment, which meets the latest international nuclear safety requirements.
The installed capacity of each Hualong One unit reaches nearly 1200 MWe, and each unit is able to generate nearly 10 billion kWh of electricity annually, meeting the demand of 1 million people within a moderately developed country.
The electricity generated by a Hualong One unit is equivalent to reducing the consumption of 3.12 million tons of standard coal and emission of 8.16 million tons of carbon dioxide annually, as well as equivalent to planting over 70 million trees annually.
Construction of two further demonstration Hualong One units are under way at China General Nuclear’s Fangchenggang plant in the Guangxi Autonomous Region. They are expected to be operational in 2022. CNNC has also commenced construction of two other Hualong One units at their Zhangzhou plant in Fujian province and Taipingling in Guangdong.
Two Hualong One units are under construction at Pakistan’s Karachi nuclear power plant which are scheduled to be operational in 2021 and 2022.
Yu Jianfeng, chairman of CNNC, said that the corporation will accelerate the progress of mass constructing Hualong One reactors and developing new series technologies in a bid to promote the Hualong One for export and aim to achieve carbon neutrality.
With the latest announcement of Unit 5 at Fuqing Nuclear Power Plant,CNNC now has a total of 23 nuclear power reactors in operation with a combined generating capacity of 21.4 GWe.