The lower section of containment installed at ACP100 (photo credit: CNNC)China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) announced that the lower section of the containment shell of “the world's first onshore commercial small modular reactor – Linglong One – was hoisted into place on 26 February, 46 days ahead of schedule.

The ACP100 reactor is under construction at the Changjiang nuclear power plant in Hainan province. The overall height of the lower cylinder of the steel containment is about 15 metres, the structural weight 450 tons, and the total hoisting weight about 665 tons. Due to the weight, a 3,200-ton crawler crane was used for the first time in this hoisting operation, CNNC noted. 

The upper section and the top head of the containment will now be installed.

The multi-purpose, 125MWe SMR is a pressurised water reactor designed for electricity generation, urban heating, urban cooling, industrial steam production, or seawater desalination. CNNC began development of the Linglong One in 2010, and it was the first SMR project to pass an independent safety assessment by International Atomic Energy Agency experts in 2016.

Its integrated pressurised water reactor (PWR) design was completed in 2014 and it was identified as a 'key project' in China's 12th Five-Year Plan. The design, which has 57 fuel assemblies and integral steam generators, was developed from the larger ACP1000 PWR. It incorporates passive safety features and could be installed underground.

China's state council approved the ACP100 Science and Technology Demonstration Project in 2021. The project is owned by CNNC Hainan Nuclear Power Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of CNNP. Construction is expected to take 65 months, for startup in May 2025. Once completed, the project will produce  enough power to meet the needs of 526,000 households, CNNC said. The reactor is designed for electricity production, heating, steam production or seawater desalination.

Photo: The lower section of containment has been installed at China's first ACP100 (photo credit: CNNC)