The first trial connection to the grid of unit 2 at the Belarusian NPP is planned for March-April, according to Deputy Minister of Energy Mikhail Mikhadyuk. The installation of process equipment and pipelines is almost completed and start-up work is underway. This includes preparations for heating and hydraulic testing of the primary and secondary circuits of the reactor for strength and density. This will be followed by bringing the unit to minimum controlled power.
Specialists will then conduct a series of physical, electrical and other tests as the power level is gradually increased. Commissioning of Belarus 2 is scheduled for the second half of 2023.
The Belarus NPP comprises two Russian supplied VVER-1200 power units. The plant was issued a permit for pilot industrial operation of unit 1 in December 2020 and was connected to the grid in March 2021 and began commercial operation in June. It was the first VVER-1200 unit to begin operation outside of Russia. Fuel loading was completed at unit 2 in December 2021.
Image: The Belarusian nuclear power plant (courtesy Rosatom)