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Haiyang 3 reactor vessel lifted into place

(WNN) | Updated: 2023-12-25
2023-12-25 (WNN)

The 281-tonne reactor pressure vessel has been successfully hoisted into position at unit 3 of the Haiyang nuclear power plant in China's Shandong province, in a process which took just over two hours.


(Image: Shanghai Nuclear Engineering Research and Design Institute)

The lift began at 14:07 on 21 December with Shanghai Nuclear Engineering Research and Design Institute saying the process had to be carefully planned to ensure the highly precision manoeuvres - which included lifting, rotating, lowering and adjusting - all proceeded successfully.

The reactor pressure vessel - which houses the nuclear reactor and is the core of a nuclear power plant - was installed in place at 16:23, in what was described as more major progress for the construction of the CAP1000 reactor unit - the Chinese version of the AP1000. It uses modular construction techniques, enabling large structural modules to be built at factories and then installed at the site. This means that more construction activities can take place at the same time, reducing the time taken to build a plant as well as offering economic and quality control benefits.

The construction of two new reactors at each of the Haiyang, Sanmen and Lufeng nuclear power plant sites in China was approved by the country's State Council on 20 April 2022. The approvals were for Haiyang 3 and 4, Sanmen units 3 and 4 and units 5 and 6 of the Lufeng plant. The Sanmen and Haiyang plants are already home to two Westinghouse AP1000 units each.

In May last year, China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) signed contracts for the civil construction of the nuclear islands and installation engineering for the planned second phases of the Sanmen and Haiyang nuclear power plants. China Nuclear Industry 22 Construction Company was contracted to carry out the civil construction of the Sanmen Phase II nuclear island, and China Nuclear Industry 24 Construction Company contracted to carry out the civil construction of the Haiyang Phase II nuclear island. China Nuclear Industry Fifth Construction Company (CNI5) was contracted to undertake the nuclear island installation work at all four units.

Unit 1 of the Haiyang plant entered commercial operation in October 2018, with unit 2 following in January 2019. Together, Haiyang units 1 and 2 can provide some 20 TWh of electricity to the grid annually, sufficient to meet one-third of household demand in Shandong province.

The first safety-related concrete was poured for the nuclear island of Haiyang unit 3 in July 2022. Construction of Haiyang 4 began in April this year. The Shanghai Nuclear Engineering Research and Design Institute said the planned construction period for Haiyang 3 and 4 was 56 months, with the two units scheduled to be fully operational in 2027.

Haiyang nuclear power plant is also the centre of an innovative district heating scheme which, since November is supplying heat via 23 kilometres pipeline to the cities of Haiyang and Rushan, with State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) saying the project covers an area of 12.5 million square metres and meets the clean-heating needs of about 400,000 people.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News