The first reactor pressure vessel has arrived at Turkey's Akkuyu nuclear power plant (credit: Rosatom)The 330t reactor pressure vessel (RPV) for unit 1 of Turkey's Akkuyu nuclear power plant has been delivered to the construction site.

The RPV, measuring 4.5 meters in diameter and 12 meters high, was manufactured at Atommash, the Volgodonsk branch of Russia's AEM-technology. The vessel and its parts successfully passed more than 300 quality control tests at various stages during the manufacturing process.

The Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NRA) and independent inspection organisations accredited by it conducted inspections and checks at all stages of manufacture of the reactor pressure vessel at Atommash plant, Akkuyu Nuclear said.

It took 20 days to deliver the RPV from the special quay of JSC Atommash at Tsimlyanskoye Reservoir to the Eastern Cargo Terminal at the Akkuyu NPP site.

"The vessel complete with the thrust and support rings has covered a distance of nearly 3000  kilometers from JSC AEM-Technology branch Atommash in Volgodonsk to the site of Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant – the first NPP in Turkey," said Sergei Butckikh, first deputy chief executive officer – director of the NPP under construction.  "Upon completion of all necessary customs procedures, the reactor pressure vessel will pass the incoming inspection", he added.  

A special commission has been established to check the completeness and quality of engineering and accompanying documentation, and will perform a thorough inspection of the reactor pressure vessel using various equipment. As the next step, the reactor pressure vessel will be handed over for installation.

Last month, four steam generators for the first power unit have been delivered to the construction site from Atommash.

"Construction and installation works at Akkuyu NPP site are progressing at a very good pace; Some key structural components have been mounted in the first power unit – the second tier of the internal containment, the cantilever truss and the supporting truss; the corium collecting and cooling device and the reactor dry shielding have been installed as per design position," said Butckikh. "The main equipment is delivered to the site according to schedule," he added.

The $20bn Akkuyu nuclear power plant will comprise four units with Russian designed VVER-1200 generation 3+ reactors.

Photo: Manufacturing of the reactor pressure vessel for Akkuyu 1 took almost three years (Credit: Rosatom)