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Saturday, December 6, 2008

India: 1500 MW of nuclear power to be added by 2009

Kakodkar says the aim is to generate 20,000 MW by 2020; half of this to come from PHWR.

First fast breeder reactor would get commissioned in 2010-11.

There is need to grow primary energy supply by at least 3-4 times.

Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Anil Kakodkar on Thursday expressed confidence that 1,500 MW of nuclear power would be added to the national grid in 2009 as the country was poised to benefit from the civil nuclear cooperation agreements with Russia, France and United States.

He was addressing the 11th India Power Forum meet here.

Dr. Kakodkar said he envisaged nuclear power plants comprising 6-8 units of 1000 MW each built over the next 9-10 years.
Fuel supply

The nuclear power programme was hitherto constrained by limited fuel supplies, but with the signing of the nuclear deal with the U.S. and strategies to enhance domestic uranium supplies, the country would certainly exceed the 2020 target.

The country’s first fast breeder reactor was under construction and on schedule to get commissioned in 2010-11.

“Two-three nuclear power units will be connected to the national grid next year and they would add about 1,500 MW. The nation now has a capacity to generate 4,120 MW of nuclear power, but due to shortage of nuclear fuel most of the units are running a little over half their capacity.”

It was aimed to generate 20,000 MW of nuclear power by 2020.

Half of this would come from indigenously developed Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWR).

“We aim to produce 10,000 MW through PHWRs, about 5,000 MW through imported reactors and about 2,500 MW through Fast Breeder Reactors, he said.
Talks with vendors

India was in discussion with several foreign nuclear vendors. An important guarantee it was seeking from any vendor was life-time uninterrupted supply of fuel and the right to re-process the spent fuel.

This was important because for delivering a sustained growth of 8 per cent through 2031, India would need to grow its primary energy supply by at least 3-4 times and electricity supply by 5-7 times, he said.

India was fortunate that it had developed the recycle capabilities, a situation the world should tackle, as global fuel sources were coming under increasing stress, Dr. Kakodkar added.

(Source: The Hindu)

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