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26 Jan 2021, Edition - 2023, Tuesday

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Coimbatore

Second unit of Kudankulam power plant begins production

Covai Post Network

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At present, the second unit, now connected to grid, is operating at 170 MW per day. Subsequently, the capacity would be increased to 100 per cent after securing the necessary permissions from Atomic Energy Regulatory Board

Second unit of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant was on Monday connected to the grid and it was operating at 170 MW.

Announcing this, plant site director RS Sundar said the second unit was connected to the grid at 11.17 a.m. Now with the second unit generating power, the atomic power generation of the Nuclear Power Corporation Ltd crossed the 5,000 MW mark.

After three days the unit will be disconnected for testing. “A week after that the unit will be reconnected with the grid and the power generation will be gradually increased to 50 per cent. After clearances from Atomic Energy Regulatory Board the power generation will be increased in stages,” the Kudankulam plant site director said.

Within three months the second unit will be operating to its full capacity, he said.

“We will touch power generation of 280 MW by the end of the day. We will operate the plant at that level for four days and then disconnect the unit from the grid,” another senior official said.

At present, the KKNP has permission to operate up to 50 per cent of capacity.

“On restarting the unit later, the power levels will be increased to 50 per cent. After that we have to get AERB’s permission for increasing the power levels. In couple of months’ time we hope to touch 100 per cent power levels,” the official said.

The NPCIL has built two 1,000 MW nuclear reactors at Kudankulam in Tirunelveli district with the help of Russia. The first unit began producing electricity in 2013 and it was connected to grid in October 2013. Commercial power generation began only on December 31, 2014.

There were teething troubles associated with the new plant and at regular intervals there were breakdown, sparking off intense criticism from anti-nuclear activists. Incidentally, a massive protest against the plant had resulted in shut down of construction activities for nearly one year, before chief minister J Jayalalithaa ordered a crackdown.

Since then, the KKNP has gone from strength to strength, and the first unit has been producing 940 MW per day on an average.

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