India, France Agree to Expedite Jaitapur Nuclear Power Plant

During Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s visit to France last month, India signed two agreements related to the Jaitapur Nuclear Power Plant located in the western state of Maharashtra.

One of these, a pre-engineering agreement signed with AREVA, Alstom and Nuclear Power Corporation of India, aims to bring greater clarity on all technical aspects of the project. The second agreement signed between AREVA and Larsen and Turbo — a private player — is aimed at “reduction of cost by increasing localization to improve the financial viability of the project”, reports Business Standard.

Location of Jaitapur Nuclear Power Plant

Location of Jaitapur Nuclear Power Plant

As a result of these agreements India’s apprehensions over the new European Pressurized Reactors technology have been assuaged, and the India’s Department of Atomic Energy is now ready to settle for a price per unit of electricity to be between 9 cents to 10 cents.

According to the Indo-French nuclear cooperation agreement in 2008, Nuclear Power Corporation of India, with the help of AREVA, was to construct six reactors of 1650 MW each. With transfer of technology, some of the equipment could be produced in India, which could have an overall bearing on the cost.

On completion, the Jaitapur plant will the produce the maximum energy from among all the nuclear power plants in the country.

May 2, 2015   1 Comment

India Inks Nuclear Energy Pact with Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, on his first overseas tour since winning an election last month signed four agreements with India including one  for civilian nuclear co-operation, which envisages an “exchange of knowledge and expertise, sharing of resources, capacity building and training of personnel in peaceful uses of nuclear energy.” Bloomberg reports that Sri Lanka is seeking to incorporate nuclear energy into its long-term energy plans to diversify from biomass, hydroelectricity and imported oil products.

“The bilateral agreement on civil nuclear cooperation is another demonstration of our mutual trust,” Modi told reporters.

Sri Lanka and India began talks on a civilian nuclear cooperation pact in 2012 and held another two rounds of talks last year, according to government statements.

India is one of the few countries with expertise in reactors suited to smaller power grids, and state-run Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited has previously expressed interest in exporting them. It offers more than five decades of experience in atomic energy. Its industry has built 5.8 gigawatts of capacity using mostly indigenous technology and plans to increase that to 62 gigawatts by 2032.

February 27, 2015   No Comments

Kudankulam Nuclear Units 3, 4, to Go Commercial in 2020-2021

The proposed units 3 and 4, the twin 1,000-MW reactors at the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project, have cleared all administrative and statutory clearances and are proposed for to begin construction in 2015 and 2016. Commissioning is scheduled five years after that. Unit 1 is in production and Unit 2 is already completed.

The site has been made ready for construction. “The units… are scheduled for commissioning in 2020-21,” Union Minister of State for Department of Atomic Energy, Jitendra Singh, said.

December 21, 2014   No Comments

India’s State-Run Reinsurer May Offer Nuclear Liability Coverage

India is working to set up an insurance pool to indemnify global nuclear suppliers against liability in the case of a nuclear accident, in a bid to resolve concerns of suppliers over exposure to risk.

The 2010 nuclear liability law discouraged Western companies and strained U.S.-India relations as companies said that the law deviated from international standards that put the responsibility on the operator to ensure safety. Even Indian suppliers hesitated  to sell equipment until the law was amended or they could be sure they were indemnified against any liabilities. “We are working fast to address the concerns of suppliers. We are working on a solution with the insurance companies,” R. K. Sinha, chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission, told Reuters.

State-run reinsurer GIC Re is working on a proposal to build a “nuclear insurance pool” that would indemnify the third-party suppliers against liabilities they would face in the case of an accident, where either the contracted companies bought the insurance and recovered the cost by charging more for their services, or the state-run Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) would take out insurance on behalf of suppliers.

Sinha said New Delhi believed the insurance plan was the best option given how tricky changing the law would prove, and that the proposal should be ready within the next two months.

December 21, 2014   No Comments

Modi’s “ambitious vision” for Nuclear Energy

Indian Prime Minister Modi and Russian President Putin signed an agreement whereby Russia plans to build a number of  new nuclear power plants in India, cooperate in the joint extraction of uranium and in the production of nuclear fuel and waste elimination.

Modi said that the two countries had set out an “ambitious vision” for nuclear energy during the talks and that the new reactors would be built over the next 20 years.

December 21, 2014   No Comments