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Belarus / Fuel Loading Begins At Country’s First Nuclear Plant

By David Dalton
7 August 2020

Fuel Loading Begins At Country’s First Nuclear Plant
The Belarusian nuclear power station, where fuel loading has begun at Unit 1. Photo courtesy Rosatom.
The first loading of nuclear fuel began on 7 August at the Belarusian-1 nuclear power plant near Ostrovets in western Belarus.

State news agency Belta quoted the ministry of energy’s press secretary, Olga Kozlovich, as saying 163 fuel assemblies will be loaded into the reactor, followed by turning on the main circulation pumps to heat the primary coolant of the plant to design parameters.

After that, the reactor will be brought to its minimum controlled power level so further tests can be carried out alongside a gradual increase in the power level.

Earlier this week Belarus’s nuclear regulator Gosatomnadzor told Belta it had approved fuel loading at Belarusian-1.

Two Russia-supplied Generation III VVER-1200 reactor units are under construction at the Ostrovets site. Construction of Unit 1 began in November 2013 and of Unit 2 in April 2014.

Belarusian energy minister Viktor Karankevich said recently that commercial operation of Unit 1 is planned for the first quarter of 2021.

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