Unit 5 of China’s Yangjiang nuclear plant in Guangdong province, the first ACPR1000 reactor to be built, was connected to the electricity grid on 23 May.

China General Nuclear (CGN) noted that Yangjiang 5 is the first operational reactor with a digital control system designed in China. "This is a landmark event in the field of China's nuclear power major technical equipment manufacturing," it said. "China has thus become the fourth country to master the technology after the USA, France and Japan."

The FirmSys digital instrumentation and control (I&C) system, launched in 2010, was developed by CGN's Beijing CTEC System Engineering Co Ltd subsidiary. It is capable of controlling more than 260 plant systems running nearly 10,000 pieces of equipment and process conditions.  CGN said FirmSys has already been used to upgrade several of China's operating plants. However, Yangjiang 5 is the first new reactor to feature the system.

CTEC and CGN signed a contract in 2013 for the supply of the FirmSys system, which was delivered in November 2016. The system will also be installed at Yangjiang 6, as well as at units under construction at the Hongyanhe, Tianwan and Fangchenggang NPPs, as well as the demonstration high-temperature gas-cooled reactor at Shidaowan. The International Atomic Energy Agency in May 2016 concluded that FirmSys met its safety standard requirements.
The Yangjiang NPP will host six units, four CPR-1000s units (1-4) and two  ACPR-1000s (5 and 6). Yangjiang 1 began commercial operation in March 2015, followed by units 2, 3 and 4 in June 2015, January 2016 and March 2017, respectively. First concrete for Yangjiang unit 5 was poured in September 2013, and for Yangjiang 6 the following December. All six reactors should be in operation by 2019.