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Government Mulling Enhancing Capability Of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant

The government is considering enhancing the capability of the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in the near future from 2000 MW to 6000 MW, according to the Atomic Energy Ministry.

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The government is considering enhancing the capability of the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in the near future from 2000 MW to 6000 MW, according to the Atomic Energy Ministry. Responding to a question in Lok Sabha, Minister of State in the Department of Space and Department of Atomic Energy Jitendra Singh said on Wednesday that the present capacity in operation at Kudankulam site is 2000 MW with Units1 and 2 in operation.

"It will increase progressively to 6000 MW on completion of KKNPP-3 & 4 (2 X 1000 MW) and KKNPP-5 & 6 (2 X 1000 MW) which are presently under different stages of construction," he said in a written response.

Responding to another question if spent nuclear fuel of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant is not being sent back to Russia in accordance with the Agreement signed with that government, Singh said India-Russia Inter Governmental Agreement of 2010 facilitates storage and reprocessing of Spent Nuclear Fuel of KKNPP in line with India's closed fuel cycle policy. 

India has adopted "closed fuel cycle", where spent nuclear fuel is regarded as a material of resource. Given the very small quantity of high-level waste generated post reprocessing and technologies for separation, partitioning and burning of waste being developed by the country, there is no need of a deep underground geological disposal facility in the near future, he said.

"The scheme of storage of spent (used) fuel in a nuclear power plant is two-fold. The first place of storing spent fuel is located within the reactor building/service building, generally known as the spent fuel storage pool/bay and the other is called the 'Away From Reactor' (AFR) Spent Fuel Storage Facility, within the plant premises," Singh said.

These facilities are designed with a comprehensive approach to safety to withstand extreme natural events like earthquakes and tsunamis with provisions of large operational safety margins for safe, sound and reliable performance. These are designed to ensure that there would be no adverse impact on plant personnel, general public or the environment.

AFRs are also already constructed and functional at other sites like Tarapur, Maharashtra and Rawatbhata, Rajasthan, he added. 


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