Kola 1 has been licensed for another five years' operation. The licence from the State Atomic Supervisory Committee of the Russian Federation was given to Rosenergoatom on 29 June during a ceremony to mark the VVER-440's 30th anniversary.
Nearly $200 million has been spent on upgrading and modernising the reactor. Rosenergoatom CEO Sergei Ivanov said Kola 1 could operate for another 15 years.
Meanwhile, a safety study has shown that Leningrad 1 would be able to operate for another 15 years. A safety assessment in support of the extension has been submitted to national regulator Gosatomnadzor. The unit was first connected to the grid in December 1973. Rosenergoatom, the plant owner, intends to upgrade three more reactors at the plant in order to prolong their operating lives.