Uranium & Fuel

Tvel / Russian Company Starts Fuel Facility For China’s CFR-600 Fast Neutron Reactor

By Kamen Kraev
3 March 2021

Russian Company Starts Fuel Facility For China’s CFR-600 Fast Neutron Reactor
The new facility will produce fuel for the CFR-600 fast neutron reactor in China. Courtesy Tvel.
Russian nuclear fuel manufacturer Tvel has started a production facility which will fabricate fuel for China’s CFR-600 fast neutron reactor under construction in the southeastern Fujian province.

Tvel said in a statement that the facility is part of the Elemash Machine-Building Plant, a Tvel plant in Elektrostal, near Moscow.

According to the statement, dummy fuel assemblies for the CFR-600 reactor have already been produced.

The CFR-600 is a 600-MW sodium-cooled pool-type fast reactor and is expected to begin commercial operation by 2023. The plant will be able to operate on both mixed oxide (MOX) and uranium dioxide (UO2) fuel types.

In January 2019, Tvel signed a contract to supply nuclear fuel for the CFR-600 demonstration project.

Tvel said the new production facility in Elektrostal is a result of a contract signed as a part of a 2018 nuclear cooperation deal between Russia and China, which included the joint construction and operation of the CFR-600 plant.

According to Tvel, the fuel contract covers initial loading of nuclear fuel into the CFR-600 and a number of subsequent refuels covering the first seven years of the unit’s operation.

Tvel said the new fuel fabrication facility will be used to produce fuel not only for the Chinese CFR-600 and CEFR fast reactors, but also for the Russian BN-600 fast reactor at the Beloyarsk nuclear power station.

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