11 November 2015

Changjiang Unit 1 on Chinese Hainan Island Connected to the Grid

Changjiang Unit 1 on Chinese Hainan Island Connected to Grid

10 November 2015

Grid connection took place on 7 November 2015 of the Generation II Changjiang Pressurized Water Reactor on the southern island of Hainan. The reactor project at Changjiang is a joint venture between the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) and China Huaneng Group, with shares split 51% and 49%, respectively. The CNP-600 reactor is a successor to the CNP 300, China’s first indigenously designed and built reactor. Construction of Changjiang-1 began in April 2010.

The CNP-600 design, which is considered a medium sized reactor, was originally constructed at the Qinshan site in Haiyan County, Zhejiang, where four units are in operation. However, after the Phase II reactor at Qinshan was completed, no further CNP-600 reactors were planned to be built due to “economic factors” according to Cui Shaozhang, vice President of the Huneng Nuclear Power Development Company. However, this also may have been due to competing interests between CNNC and the State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation (SNPTC). Due to the limited grid capacity and increased demands from the growing tourism industry on Hainan Island it was decided to build CNP-600 reactors at Changjiang. A second sub-seabed electric power cable is to be laid between Hainan and mainland Guandong province by 2017.

The Changjiang site will host four reactors, with Unit 2 (also a CNP-600) scheduled to begin operation in 2016; construction of Units 3 and 4 is scheduled for 2018, which will either be CNP-650 or ACP-600 design.

The connection of Changjiang-1, brings China’s operating nuclear fleet to 31, with 21 under construction.