20 november 2012

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev tours the Novovoronezh Nuclear Power Station during a working visit to the Voronezh Region

Before visiting the nuclear power station, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev looked around the Novovoronezh NPS II construction site. The Prime Minister was shown sites under construction and received a detailed account of the specifics involved in this construction effort.

During his visit to the Novovoronezh nuclear power station, the Prime Minister took an up-close look at the latest third-generation Unit No 5, outfitted with an earthquake-proof system.

In addition, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev attended a drill during which personnel honed their response skills in the event of a primary circuit leak, which is a major radiation emergency.

Upon completion of his tour of the station, the Prime Minister went on to browse promising designs that were on display in the same building, in particular, a VVER-TOI reactor that will be completed in late 2012. The reactor will reduce the costs of building a nuclear power station by 20%, extend its service life from 50 to 60 years and reduce the construction period from 54 to 48 months.

Prime Minister Medvedev also toured next-generation futuristic models of nuclear power stations which boast new reactors, new fuels and a closed-loop fuel cycle. The Prime Minister was shown a “little turtle”, which turned out to be a piece of processed waste residue. A counter showed that the “little turtle” emits less radiation than the granite embankment of the Neva River in St Petersburg.

The online background radiation monitoring system used by Rosatom also sparked the Prime Minister’s interest. He used his iPad to check background radiation around the Leningrad Nuclear Power Station, which, as Sergei Kiriyenko said, “is ten times lower than on popular beaches in Brazil.”

Dmitry Medvedev had the chance to see another Rosatom design – supercomputers – a few years ago during his visit to the Federal Nuclear Centre in Sarov. On this occasion, he was shown three similar machines with capacities of one, three and five teraflops. The Prime Minister said that such domestically manufactured computers can be useful for many companies. They are already being used by KamAZ automakers and the United Aircraft Corporation.

Organisations under Rosatom have created several neutron generators for space exploration, the medical industry and law enforcement. Dmitry Medvedev tried one of these devices himself by placing his hand on a small panel. The response “Clean” came back one second later. This device is used to check whether a person has handled explosives in the past few days. The Prime Minister asked whether the test was accurate. Experts assured him that as much as 20 nanograms of dangerous substances can be captured in a matter of six seconds.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev signed the guest book during his visit to the Novovoronezh nuclear power station.