The Leningrad NPP-2: a full set of dummy assemblies has been uploaded into the innovative VVER-1200 2nd power block’s reactor vessel

All 163 dummy assemblies have been successfully uploaded into the VVER-1200 2nd power block of the Leningrad NPP-2.

A dummy assembly is a piece of equipment which constructively fully imitates standard reactor fuel assemblies in terms of their size, weight and construction materials (except for nuclear fuel). Handling this type of equipment is extremely important for the pre-commissioning activities.

‘By uploading the dummy assemblies into the reactor, we managed to attain two goals: we did a trial run of the transportation technology process on moving this piece of equipment from a specialized storage into the reactor vessel and made sure that the re-loader works in a reliable and precise manner. This is how we have ‘rehearsed’ the physical start-up initiation, during which fuel bundles with fresh nuclear fuel will be placed into the reactor core. This milestone is scheduled for March 2020’, Alexander Belyaev, the chief engineer at the Leningrad NPP-2, said.

The dummy assemblies will stay in the reactor vessel until early next year. They are designed to model the physical dimensions of the reactor core and to verify the hydraulic characteristics of the reactor facilities during the circulation cleaning and the reactor cold and hot trials. As a part of these trials, the team will confirm that the inner surfaces of the pipelines and the primary circuit equipment are clean, verify their solidity and check the working efficiency of the technological systems in design conditions.

The Leningrad NPP is the country’s first plant with RBMK-1000 reactors (uranium-graphite circuit-type reactor running on thermal neutrons). The decision that marked its construction was taken in September 1966 by a resolution of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the USSR and the Council of Ministers No. 800-252. According to that document, the Leningrad NPP was supposed to become a core in a network of nuclear power plants with RBMK-1000 reactors that were supposed to produce a substantial share of electric power. The construction of the Leningrad NPP was going well, and by 1973 the first power block was fully erected. On December 23, 1973, following stable 72-hours’ operation at the capacity of 150 megawatt, the State Commission signed the acceptance certificate stating that the first power block of the Leningrad nuclear power plant is commissioned for pilot production. 

Back to the list