Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor to be commissioned in 2022

Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Atomic Energy and Space Shri Jitendra Singh said that the Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor will be commissioned by October 2022.

About Reactor

  • The reactor is being constructed by Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam Limited (BHAVINI) and the Indira Gandhi centre for Atomic Research (ICGAR)
  • Reactor will add 500 MW of power to the national grid once commissioned.
  • The reactor is being constructed at  Kalpakkam Atomic Power Station in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
  • The reactor was planned to be commissioned in 2012 but it getting delayed due to technical errors.

Features of the reactor

  • The reactor is a pool-type reactor whose core are immersed in liquid (water).
  • The reactor has negative void coefficient so it provides a high level of nuclear safety.
  • The speed of the fission chain reaction decreases automatically when the reactor overheats. This lowers the temperature and power level.
  • Liquid Sodium is the coolant in the reactor.

India’s three Stage Nuclear Programme

This was initiated by Homi Bhabha by using the thorium and uranium reserves found in Monazite sands of coastal regions of India. The programme runs with an objective to use Thorium reserves in India to meet the energy requirements. The programmer is running successfully by Indo-US Nuclear deal. The three stages in the programme includes,

  1. Stage 1- Pressurized Heavy Water Reactor
  2. Stage 2- Fast Breeder Reactor
  3. Stage 3- Thorium based reactor

Currently, India is in its third stage of the programme.

Thorium reserves in India

Thorium reserves in India accounts for 1%-2% of global Uranium reserves.