The 925-MW RBMK-1000 light water graphite reactor was taken offline at 00:24 Moscow time on 19 December, Rosenergoatom said.
Alexander Uvakin, Kursk NPP’s acting director, said that during its operation, the the unit has generated more than 251TWh of electricity – enough to provide for the energy consumption of the Kursk region for about 30 years.
An identical plant, Kursk-2, which began commercial operation in August 1979, is also scheduled to retire.
Two further units, Kursk-3 and Kursk-4, began commercial operation in 1984 and 1986 respectively. They are also 925-MW RBMK-1000 LWGRs.
There are two new units under construction at the Kursk site in western Russia. Kursk 2-1 and Kursk 2-2 will be the first of the VVER-TOI pressurised water reactor type and are being built to replace capacity lost by the closure of Kursk-1 and Kursk-2. Construction of Kursk 2-1 began in April 2018 and of Kursk 2-2 in April 2019.
According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Russia has 38 nuclear units in commercial operation, although with the closure of Kursk-1 that is now 37. It has four units under construction: Kursk 2-1, Kursk 2-2, Baltic-1 and the Generation IV Brest-OD-300 lead-cooled fast reactor pilot demonstration plant at the site of the Siberian Chemical Combine in Seversk, southwest Siberia.