Cranes at the Akkuyu nuclear power plant construction site (Credit: Akkuyu Nuclear)Akkuyu Nuclear, a subsidiary of Rosatom has received a loan from Sovcombank of up to $300 million for a period of seven years to finance the construction of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant in Turkey.

 “We value long-term partnerships and are pleased to expand our strategic cooperation with Sovcombank,” said Ilya Rebrov, Deputy General Director for Economics and Finance at Rosatom. “The construction of the Akkuyu NPP n Turkey is progressing well. In this context, the loan from Sovcombank is important to ensure timely financing of the project. In general, Rosatom is today engaged in the implementation of many projects that require the involvement of reliable financial partners, interested in supporting the sustainable development agenda. I am sure that Sovcombank will help us in solving these problems."

Dmitry Gusev, Chairman of the Board of Sovcombank PJSC, said: “Construction of modern nuclear power plants will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Sovcombank was the first Russian bank to join a group of 130 international banks that signed the UN Principles for Responsible Banking (UNEP FI) at the UN General Assembly in New York in 2019. Sovcombank has pledged to build a strategy in accordance with international climate goals. The provision of a loan for the construction of the Akkuyu NPP in Turkey is fully consistent with these goals."

The 4800MWe Akkuyu NPP, which will comprise four VVER-1200 reactors is Rosatom’s first build-own-operate venture. The $20bn project is based on an inter-governmental agreement signed between Russia and Turkey in 2010.

Construction progress at Turkey's Akkuyu nuclear plant

In late December, Akkuyu Nuklear said the first tier of the inner containment shell (ICS) had been installed at Akkuyu 2, and that a support truss had been installed at Akkuyu 1. Installation of the first tier of the ICS, with the use of tower cranes, took seven days. Installation was carried out in sections, each consisting of a cladding sheet and a frame designed to provide spatial rigidity. In total, 10 sections with a height of 5.7 metres and a mass of about 7.5 tons were installed. Upon completion of the installation, the height of the containment of the reactor building at Akkuyu 2 increased to more than 4.950 metres. The next stage wil be to weld the sections together.

At Akkuyu 1, a heavy Liebherr LR 13000 crawler crane was used to install the support girder — a welded metal structure weighing 145 tons, consisting of radial beams, which are poured with concrete of a special composition. The truss with an outer diameter of 9.16 metres is made of carbon steel and is designed to securely fix the reactor in a concrete shaft. The installation of the truss took six weeks, three of which were spent on the pre-assembly of the structure. At unit 1, it is now planned to work on the concreting of the reactor shaft up to the level of more than 16.500 metres and on installation of a thrust truss designed to fasten the reactor vessel at the upper level.

“I am pleased to note that in 2020 we completed all the key processes planned in accordance with the construction schedule for the Akkuyu NPP,” said Sergey Butskikh, First Deputy General Director at Akkuyu Nuklear and director for nuclear power plant construction.

“Operations for the installation of the first tier of the ICS at unit 2 and the support truss at unit 1 were carried out routinely. There were no comments on the work of the installation personnel and the quality of the work was confirmed by a special commission, whose members carried out the acceptance of the installation work. I am confident that in the coming year we will continue to move forward without slowing the pace”, he added.

Photo: Construction of Turkey's Akkuyu nuclear power plant (Credit: Akkuyu Nuclear)