India's fast breeder reactor achieves second milestone

Last Updated: Sun, Dec 06, 2009 04:34 hrs

Chennai: India's first indigenously designed 500MW fast breeder nuclear power project achieved its second milestone albeit silently when the huge main vessel was lowered into the safety vessel, an official said.

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"We have been waiting to do this for quite sometime but were not permitted by the rain gods. As the sky was clear, we decided to go ahead with the lowering of the main vessel and completed it on Saturday," project director Prabhat Kumar told IANS from Kalpakkam.

The Rs 5,600 crore project is being built by the Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam Limited (Bhavini) at the Kalpakkam nuclear enclave, around 80 km from here.

A fast breeder reactor is one which breeds more material for a nuclear fission reaction than it consumes and key to India's three-stage nuclear power programme.

Lowering of the huge stainless steel main vessel - 12.9 metres in diameter and 12.94 metres in height, weighing 206 tonnes - is considered a major step in completing the 500 MW power project by the September 2011 deadline.

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