India Delays Completion of its Indigenous Nuclear Reactor

Only a few countries possess the fast neutron reactor technology, with Russia leading the field. India plans to set up six such reactors over the next 15 years but initial challenges remain.

Kudankulam nuclear power plant, India. - Sputnik International
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New Delhi (Sputnik) — India has pushed back the completion date of its locally designed fast breeder nuclear reactor. The 500 MW reactor will start functioning by the end of 2017 instead of the original completion date of March next year.

The fast breeder reactor is based on a uniquetechnology that generates more fissile material than consumed.

“All construction activity and equipment erection and installation have been completed in the Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR). However, the reason for the delay is primarily due to augmentation of certain additional assessments and checks on the installed equipment, as a matter of abundant caution and as per the increased regulatory requirements owing to first of its kind reactor in the country,” said Dr Jitendra Singh, India’s Minister of State for Atomic Energy.

India has set up several committees to complete the project that was expected to be completed by 2010. Due to inordinate delays, India has spent more than double of the initial estimates. A Parliamentary panel has raised questions over delay in delivering of components to the project by industries.

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