ROSATOM plans to construct SHELF-M reactor plant in Chukotka
Communications Department of ROSATOM, PUBLISHED 15.06.2023
ROSATOM and the Government of Chukotka have signed an agreement to collaborate on the implementation of a small nuclear power plant project in the region based on the latest Russian SHELF-M reactor plant. The agreement was signed during the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Alexei Likhachev, Director General of ROSATOM, and Vladislav Kuznetsov, Acting Governor and Chairman of the Government of the Chukotka Autonomous Okrug signed the document.
The agreement outlines the intentions and procedures for cooperation between the parties in the construction of a nuclear power plant to ensure reliable and low-carbon power supply to the Sovinoye gold deposit and the settlements of the Chukotka Autonomous Region.
"Small nuclear power plant projects are of great importance for the socio-economic development of remote and decentralised energy supply regions of Russia. Implementation of such projects gives rise to new promising industrial projects and creates new jobs and professions, thereby contributing to economic growth and improving people's lives. We are already operating the only floating NPP in the world, the "Akademik Lomonosov," and implementing the project of the first Russian land-based SMR in Yakutia with the RITM-200N reactor. Today, together with the Government of the Chukotka Autonomous Okrug, we have confirmed our intention to cooperate on the new nuclear energy project. SHELF-M expands the range of low-power reactors and our capabilities for the use of nuclear energy, adapting technologies to the needs of customers," said Alexei Likhachev.
"Chukotka is the flagship region for the implementation of domestic projects of small nuclear power plants. In 1974, the first power unit of the Bilibino NPP with a capacity of 12 MW was put into operation. In 2020, the world's only floating nuclear power plant, the "Akademik Lomonosov," was put into operation in the city of Pevek. This was a landmark event for our region and the entire global nuclear industry. The next step, which we intend to take jointly with ROSATOM, is the construction of a small land-based nuclear power plant with the SHELF-M reactor. I am sure that the development of a partnership with ROSATOM, one of the recognised world leaders in small nuclear power plants technologies, will give a new impetus to the innovative and industrial development of our region and will help us significantly improve the quality of people's lives," said Vladislav Kuznetsov.
The technical designs of the reactor plant and the main technological equipment are expected to be completed by 2024. The land-based small nuclear power plant with the SHELF-M reactor is planned to be commercially operational by 2030.
The creation of the land-based small nuclear power plant with the SHELF-M reactor is part of the Federal Project "New nuclear power industry, including small reactors for remote territories" under the Comprehensive Programme "Development of engineering, technology, and scientific research in the field of the use of atomic energy in the Russian Federation."
The development of the SHELF-M reactor plant and its general design is managed by NIKIET JSC, with Rusatom Overseas JSC responsible for overseeing the programme to create a land-based small nuclear power plant based on the SHELF-M reactor. The plant has a service life of 60 years, with the reactor operating for approximately eight years on a single load of fuel. The thermal power of the reactor is 35 MW, which will generate up to 10 MW of electrical energy.
The Sovinoye deposit is situated off the coast of the Chukchi Sea in the Iultinsky district and forms part of the Chaun-Bilibino industrial zone. Discovered in the 1970s, the Sovinoye deposit serves as the core of a gold-bearing cluster, with over 30 placer and base gold deposits identified in the area. In the spring of 2020, Elkonsky Mining and Metallurgical Company, a subsidiary of the Mining Division of Rosatom State Corporation, Atomredmetzoloto JSC, acquired a licenсe for geological exploration, study, and gold production at the Sovinoye deposit.
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