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Nuclear bonds: Russia supplies fuel for China Experimental Fast Reactor

The first batch of nuclear fuel has been supplied by a subsidiary of Russias state nuclear corporation Rosatom for the China Experimental Fast Reactor (CEFR).

According to a company statement, the fuel has been supplied under a contract between TVEL (a Rosatom subsidiary), the China Nuclear Energy Industry Corporation, and the China Institute of Atomic Energy.

CEFR is used for research purposes, though it also operates within a 20MW power unit, supplying electricity to the grid. It is classified by the International Atomic Energy Agency as the only fast power reactor in the world outside of Russia.

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As part of the CEFR project, Russia and China are constructing a demonstration reactor CFR-600 in Fujian Province, China.

“We supply fuel to the VVER-1000 powered units of Tianwan NPP, we have localized fabrication of VVER-1000 fuel under license at Yibin plant, which we supply with Russian-made fuel components,” said Oleg Grigoriyev, senior vice-president for commerce and international business at TVEL.

“At the same time, we are negotiating fuel contracts for the new VVER-1200 power units in China, which will be constructed by Rosatom,” he added. “The cooperation in the field of fast reactor technologies, including the fuel cycle, bears a strategic importance as it aims at the creation of dual-component nuclear power system in the future.”

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