Key module installed at China’s Xudabao 1

31 January 2024

The CA20 module has been installed at unit 1 of China’s Xudabao NPP in Liaoning province. The massive 1000- tonne module, which will comprise plant and equipment for used fuel storage, transmission, the heat exchanger and waste collection, among other things is 20.6 metres long, 14.2 metres wide and 21 metres high.

"The hoisting and placement of CA20 this time is another important milestone after the bottom head of unit 1 of Xudabao nuclear power plant was put in place, laying a solid foundation for the subsequent construction of the nuclear island," said CNI23 a subsidiary of China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC).

The ceremony marking to the start of construction of Xudabao 1 took place in November 2023. The unit will have a 1,290 MWe CAP1000 reactor, China’s adaptation of the Westinghouse AP-1000. The unit is expected to enter commercial operation in 2028 followed by unit 2 a year later.

Construction of units 3&4 with Rosatom-supplied VVER-1200 reactors is already underway. Unit 3 started construction in July 2021 and unit 4 in May 2022. The plant will have six units in total, each with a capacity of over 1,000 MWe, with an investment outlay of over CNY100bn ($13.8bn).

The Xudabao project was originally expected to comprise six CAP1000 reactors, with units 1 and 2 in the first phase. However, with a change in plan, two VVER-1200 reactors were designated for Xudabao 3&4. These units are expected to begin operation in 2027 and 2028. Once all six units are completed, the plant will provide more than 54 TWh of electricity annually.

The Xudabao plant is owned by Liaoning Nuclear Power Company Ltd, in which CNNC holds 70% with Datang International Power Generation Co holding 20% and State Development & Investment Corporation owning 10%. The general contractor is China Nuclear Power Engineering Company Ltd, a subsidiary of CNNC.

Image: Installation of the CA20 module at unit 1 of China’s Xudabao nuclear power plant in Liaoning province (courtesy of CNNC)

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