Rosatom obtained a construction license for the nuclear plant in Bangladesh. Construction is about to start.
The Bangladesh Atomic Energy Regulatory Authority (BAERA) issued a design and construction license for the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant. According to ASE (Rosatom’s engineering division), the document enables the company to proceed with construction operations. “As a general contractor of the plant, ASE strictly follows the Rooppur project schedule. On 4 November, BAERA issued the license we need to go full tilt with construction on the nuclear plant’s site,” the company said. The plan for November is to start concreting the foundation for the reactor building. This operation usually marks the beginning of the plant’s construction, says Alexander Khazin, ASE Senior Vice President for International Projects.
The Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant will be built on the bank of the Ganges, 160 km away from the country’s capital Dhaka. The plant will have two most advanced VVER-1200 reactors. The foundation stone ceremony was held in October 2013 after the preliminary project contract was signed between the countries. The general construction contract for the plant was signed on 25 December 2015. In early 2017, the Russian government provided Bangladesh with sovereign loan to finance the main construction phase at Rooppur. Unit 1 is scheduled for commissioning in 2023 to be followed by Unit 2 in 2024.
In September, Russia also signed an agreement to remove spent nuclear fuel from the future nuclear plant for subsequent disposal.
Russian-designed process control system
The Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant will use a Russian-designed process control system. This system integrates multi-level software and hardware components into a single NPP management tool. It is planned to be manufactured and delivered to Rooppur in 2019–2021. Equipment installation and testing will begin right after that. The process control system will be installed by Rusatom Automated Control Systems (RASU, a Rosatom Group company) under the supervision of AtomStroyExport (a subsidiary of Rooppur’s general contractor ASE).