China State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation (SNPTC) and CNNC Sanmen Nuclear Power Company Limited (SMNPC) announced Wednesday that the world’s first unit of AP1000 nuclear power plant located in Sanmen, Zhejiang Province, China, has received the fuel load permit from China’s National Nuclear Safety Administration (NNSA) and has commenced initial fuel loading.Sanmen Unit 1 has successfully completed all the necessary functional tests as well as technical, safety and Chinese regulatory reviews. The fuel load process will be followed by initial criticality, initial synchronization to the electrical grid, and conservative, step by step, power ascension testing, until all testing is safely and successfully completed at 100 percent power, the reactor's designer Westinghouse said.
“Today we have reached a tremendous milestone for Westinghouse and our AP1000 plant technology,” said José Emeterio Gutiérrez, Westinghouse president and chief executive officer. “This is the next major step in delivering the world’s first AP1000 plant to our customer and demonstrating the benefits of our advanced passive safety technology to the world.”
Commenting on Westinghouse’s partnership with the Chinese government and suppliers as key contributors to the successful delivery of clean energy, Gavin Liu, president – Asia Region stated, “Westinghouse is proud to be a partner in China’s forward-looking nuclear energy program, an effort that will provide clean-air electricity to power China’s economy. Through technology transfer, localization and infrastructure development, Westinghouse continues to collaborate with our Chinese partners and supports the development of China’s nuclear power industry.”
In 2007, Westinghouse successfully won the bid for China’s generation III+ nuclear power projects to build two units of AP1000 reactors in Sanmen, Zhejiang Province and two units in Haiyang, Shandong Province.