- Sep 22, 2021 5:08 am GMT
"The first of the two high-temperature gas-cooled (HTGR) reactors of the demonstration HTR-PM plant at Shidaowan, in China's Shandong province, attained a sustained chain reaction for the first time yesterday. The reactor is scheduled to be connected to the electricity grid before the end of this year.
The No.1 reactor achieved first criticality at 9.35am on 12 September, China Huaneng announced. It noted this milestone was reached 23 days after the start of fuel loading.
The company said the demonstration project will now conduct zero-power physical tests to verify the core and control rod performance and the availability of nuclear instrument monitoring system equipment. China Huaneng added it will 'continue to standardise the follow-up commissioning and trial operation of the demonstration project to ensure the first grid-connected power generation in 2021.'"
In the works for nearly a decade, China's HTR-PM reactors are specifically designed to be compatible with "balance-of-plant" machinery in coal plants - switchyards, transmission networks, cooling water systems and turbines - so that existing coal plants can be converted to zero-carbon nuclear plants in less than one year.
This technology could, right now, be re-invigorating broken economies in the southeastern U.S. - if we hadn't wasted so much time and money pursuing the empty promise of "renewables".
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