China’s Sanmen 2 enters commercial operation

12 November 2018

Unit 2 of China’s Sanmen nuclear plant in Zhejiang province began commercial operation on 5 November, China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) announced. 

Sanmen 2 is the third AP1000 reactor to enter commercial operation in China. Sanmen 1 began commercial operation on 21 September, followed by Haiyang 1 in Shandong province on 22 October. A fourth AP1000, Haiyang 2, was connected to the grid on 13 October and is expected to begin operating in early 2019.

In September 2007, Westinghouse and its partner the Shaw Group received approval to construct the four AP1000 units in China. Construction of Sanmen 1 began in April 2009 and of Sanmen 2 in December 2009. Construction of Haiyang 1 and 2 started in September 2009 and June 2010, respectively. 

Four AP1000 reactors were under construction  in the USA, two each at  Vogtle in Georgia and the VC Summer nuclear plant in South Carolina. However, construction of the two VC Summer units was suspended in August 2017. Vogtle 3&4 are currently expected to start operating in November 2021 and November 2022.

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