The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (Enec) has achieved major milestones as it moves towards a new phase in the construction of Units 3 and 4 at the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant which is now more than 50 per cent completed.
The recent progress significantly advances Enec’s goal of delivering safe, clean, efficient and reliable nuclear energy to the UAE through its Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme, said a statement from the corporation.
The construction achievements include the successful setting in place of Unit 3’s reactor containment building (RCB) liner dome section, effectively installing the roof of the structure which now houses the reactor vessel (RV), said the statement.
Further, the completion of Unit 4’s turbine generator operating deck and the setting of the last reactor containment liner plate rings mark important progress for the units, it added.
These milestones are a result of Enec’s extensive collaboration with its prime contractor and joint venture partner, the Korean Electric Power Corporation (Kepco), said its top official.
"All construction milestones for the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant project have been achieved in accordance with the highest standards of quality and safety," remarked Enec CEO Mohamed Al Hammadi.
"The latest successful achievement of these milestones for Units 3 and 4, is a result of many months of hard work by all those involved. I am proud of our teams whose commitment and dedication is a key factor in the continued successful construction of the world’s largest nuclear plant, with four identical units being built simultaneously," said Al Hammadi.
According to him, peaceful nuclear energy will bring many benefits, from the creation of high-value job opportunities to the emergence of a new sophisticated industrial sector to support operations in Barakah.
With the successful setting of Unit 3’s RCB liner dome section, it is now more than 62 per cent complete and work to pour the concrete and complete the RCB is progressing steadily.
The RCB is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2017, roughly a year after similar work was concluded on Unit 2, in line with Enec’s construction schedule, stated the top official.
Enec’s deputy CEO Ahmed Al Rumaithi said the completion of the turbine generator operating deck and the setting of the final reactor containment liner plate rings on Unit 4 has allowed work to begin on erecting the turbine building and the interior and exterior concrete for the unit’s RCB is now being poured.
"Once completed, we will be ready for the installation of Unit 4’s reactor pressure vessel in mid-2017," he noted.
Al Rumaithi revealed that 35 per cent of the construction work at Unit 4 had been completed and was ahead of schedule, with the completion of the deck and rings having occurred roughly 10 months after similar work was concluded on Unit 3.
"The Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant is scheduled for completion in 2020, with construction having started in 2012. With four reactors online, the facility will deliver up to a quarter of the UAE’s electricity needs and save up to 12 million tons in carbon emissions every year," he noted.
Al Rumaithi pointed out that the project at Barakah was progressing steadily and overall, around 75 per cent of the construction work had been completed at Units 1 to 4.
All four units will deliver safe, clean, reliable and efficient nuclear energy to the UAE grid, pending regulatory reviews and licensing, he added.