China General Nuclear (CGN) on 25 January signed a strategic cooperation agreement with China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) to work jointly to develop floating nuclear power plants (FNPPs).
Construction of the first floating reactor is expected to start next year, CGN said, with electricity generation to begin in 2020. CGN is currently undertaking preliminary design work for a 200MWt (60MWe) demonstration ACPR50S reactor to supply electricity, heat and desalination to islands or in coastal areas, or for offshore oil and gas exploration.
China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) approved development of the ACPR50S reactor design in December as part of the 13th Five-Year Plan for innovative energy technologies.
CSIC has already designed two solutions for marine nuclear power platforms: one is for a NPP on a floating platform; the other is for a submersible NPP, CGN said. Earlier in January, CGN signed a strategic cooperation framework agreement with China National Offshore Oil Corporation to cooperate in the development of nuclear technology for use in offshore oil fields.