From the coverage atWNN comes the news, good and bad, for nuclear tech deployment around the world. Also other sources a well. These as summations/abstracts usually of the longer articles.
First,NYT article on how the gov't, in sheer panic, considered 'evacuating Tokyo during Fukushima a year ago. Like I said the good, the bad and the ugly.
But there is more, below...
Grid connection for South Korean units
South Korea's two newest nuclear reactors, Shin Kori 2 and Shin Wolsong 1, have been connected to the grid.[Comment: away we go. Zero panic on the part of the Korean nation as to their nuclear figure. They are going to go to 60% nuclear by 2030. Lets imports of expensive fossil fuel, lower carbon output.--David]
Shin Kori 2 started up in December 2011 and was connected to the grid in January, joining Shin Kori 1 which entered commercial operation in early 2011. Meanwhile, Shin Wolsong 1 started up and was connected to the grid in January. Its sister plant, Shin Wolsong 2, is expected to start up before the end of 2012.
Nuclear development is routine in South Korea
The two units are both South Korean-designed OP-1000 pressurised water reactors and are due to enter commercial operation by the middle of 2012. The grid connection brings the total number of operating reactors in Korea to 23.
Construction starts at Baltic plant
This from WNN
The first concrete has been poured for the foundation of the twin-unit Baltic nuclear power plant in Kaliningrad, marking the official start of construction of the first reactor there.
RosEnergoAtom announced that on 24 February some 1800 cubic metres of concrete was poured into the foundation slab of the nuclear island building by the general contractor Nizhny Novgorod-based Atomenergoproekt and its subcontractor JSC Northern Construction Management. The pouring of first concrete means that the first Baltic unit becomes the ninth power reactor under construction in Europe.
The chief engineer of RosEnergoAtom's Baltic power plant construction division, Alexander Chebotarev, said that the quality of each batch of concrete is being checked by an onsite certification laboratory. He noted that measures have been taken to create the necessary conditions for laying concrete during the winter weather. Chebotarev said that a special heat gun is being used underneath an awning erected over the foundation in order to raise the temperature to above 15°C whilst protecting the concrete from rain. "All phases of work went smoothly, all in normal mode," he said.
The twin VVER-1200 Baltic project is situated in Kaliningrad, an exclave of the Russian Federation that sits between the EU states of Poland and Lithuania. It is a stand-out project for Russia: the first to be opened to investment by European utilities; the first intended to export most of its output; and the first to use Western components such as an Alstom-Atomenergomash steam turbine.
The plant will be majority owned by RosEnergoAtom, with 49% available to private investment. Talks have so far been held with CEZ, EDF, Enel and Iberdrola and late last year Switzerland-based utility Alpiq agreed with Russian grid operator Inter RAO UES to explore possibilities for a transmission link of up to 800 MWe from Kaliningrad to Germany.
RosEnergoAtom said that the construction of the plant has now entered into "an intensive phase." Commercial operation of the first reactor is slated for 2017, with the second following one year later.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News
[Comment: RosEnergoAtom is intent on sellingpower to Germany, seen as a major market for clean, green, nuclear energy. I think the real big market, unmentioned is Lithuania and Poland and possibly Sweden.--David]
Kuwait Cancels Nuclear Program.
Gleaned from many sources, the disfunctional Kuwaiti gov't decided to continue to burn vast amounts of it's own natural gas (actually ALL of it) and millions of barrels of oil a year to produce needed electricity instead of going nuclear. They had a considered it starting in 2009 but nothing ever really transpired. They've had major problems with their own infrastructure development and virtually no vision on how to get out it, despite billions in aid and military-industrial investments by the United States.
S.Africa plans more funding for nuclear plants
The government has put a R300-billion price tag on its proposed nuclear reactors after years of keeping mum on what the new reactors would cost.
But although this is around a third of SA’s annual budget, it is lower than the going price for a modern nuclear design.
The price, which appeared in last week’s Budget review for 2012, is lower than the current cost of nuclear reactors built in the US, which may be an indication that the government is expecting to draw cheaper bids from from Korea and China.
Questions have been raised as to whether the Korean and Chinese nuclear designs would meet European regulatory standards.
Steve Thomas, professor of energy policy and director of research at the University of Greenwich, said the R300bn translated into about $4 000 (R30 700) a kilowatt. This is called the “overnight cost” and does not include finance costs.
“The two bids they (Eskom) got last time were both over $6 000/kW, so I can only assume they are expecting Korea and China to come in way cheaper. $6 000/kw ‘overnight’ is about par for the advanced estimates for reactors in the US and bids elsewhere, so if you were going for a modern design, that would be the price,” Thomas said.
The government’s last call for tenders was restricted to the French nuclear company Areva and the American power company Westinghouse. Eskom suspended the proposed nuclear project in 2008 because of the cost. The utility was reportedly shocked by the high cost of the French and American bids.
Eskom proposes to generate 9 600MW of nuclear power by 2029. The design the government selects will determine how many nuclear power stations will be built. This could range from six to 10.
“If it was a French reactor (EPR 1 600MW), that would be six reactors. If it was an AP1000 (1 200MW), that would be eight reactors. If it was Korean APR1400 (1 400MW), that would be seven reactors. If it was a Chinese CPR1000, that would be 10 reactors. The two bids last time (in 2008) were for AP1000 and EPR designs, so it is hard to see how it could be them. The R300bn price looks like the bid made by Korea for the UAE. That was their first ever export bid and most people assume it was underpriced,” Thomas said.
China has never bid to export nuclear reactors, so it was pure speculation to say Chinese reactors would be cheap, he said. China had sold two 300MW reactors to Pakistan, but the design and the price were not made public.
The DA’s Lance Greyling will table a motion to debate the proposed nuclear programme in Parliament as soon as possible.
The public had had no chance to scrutinise the programme. They had a right to see the evidence on which the budgetary allocation was decided, he said.
“Given that the shadow of the arms deal corruption continues to darken our democracy, the government should be extra careful about the nuclear build programme,” Greyling said.
The three sites Eskom has earmarked for the power stations are Koeberg, north of Cape Town, Bantamsklip on the southern Cape coast near Pearly Beach and Thyspunt near Cape St Francis in the Eastern Cape. - Political Bureau