The BN-600 fast reactor at unit 3 of Russia’s Beloyarsk nuclear power plant was shut down on 2 March for scheduled maintenance and refuelling.
Deputy chief engineer at the Beloyarsk nuclear plant responsible for repair, Mikhail Roslyakov, explained that units with fast neutron reactors are shut down twice a year for routine maintenance and the replacement of 25% of the fuel.
Beloyarsk 3, which began operation in 1980, is also being prepared for further life extension to 2025, and in the long term to 2040.
In 2010 the BN-600 received a licence from Rostekhnadzor to operate for an additional 10 years beyond its 30-year design life.
This was done after upgrading work was carried out during which part of the equipment was replaced, individual systems were modernised, and new safety systems were introduced. The reactor core and turbine equipment also underwent modernisation.
Peter Govorov, deputy chief engineer for engineering support and modernisation at Beloyarsk NPP said that to extend the operation to 2040 major upgrades would be required, including replacing the steam generator modules.
Photo: Beloyarsk nuclear power palnt (Photo: Rosenergoatom)