Unit 2 of Russia’s Novovoronezh-II nuclear plant (also known as Novovoronezh 7) has begun pilot operation, nuclear utility Rosenergoatom said on 4 June.
Pilot operation is the final stage of the construction of the unit and part of the commissioning process which comprises four sub-stages: mastering the power level of 50%; mastering the power level of 75%; mastering nominal power (including testing at the power levels of 90% and 100%); and comprehensive testing of all the equipment and its acceptance for operation.
Approval for pilot operation was received from regulator Rostechnadzor on 3 June 2019, after which testing began at 50% power. The VVER-1200 reactor was brought to the minimum controlled power level on 22 March, was first connected to the grid on 1 May.
The main architect and general contractor for Novovoronezh-II 2 are Rosatom subsidiaries Atomenergoproekt and ASE, respecitely. The unit will be commissioned at the end of 2019.
Novovoronezh NPP is the largest producer of electrical energy in the Voronezh Region, supplying 90% of the region’s electricity and up to 90% of heat for Novovoronezh city.
The Novovoronezh NPP comprises one oprating VVER-440 unit (4) and one VVER-1000 unit (5). It was the first nuclear plant in Russia to have VVER-type reactors. Unit 1 the Novovoronezh-II plant, also known as Novovoronezh 6, (a VVER-1200) was commissioned in February 2017. Novovoronezh II-2 will be the third VVER-1200 to be commissioned following Novovoronezh II-1 and Leningrad II-1 (launched in 2017).