June 11, 2021

RUSSIA STARTED CONSTRUCTION OF BREST FAST NEUTRON REACTOR

On June 8, 2021, the first concrete was poured for lead-cooled fast neutron reactor BREST-OD-300 at the Siberian Chemical Combine (SCC) in the closed city of Seversk, Tomsk region. The reactor is a key part of a pilot closed fuel cycle facility (also known as the Pilot-Demonstration Energy Complex) constructed at the SCC site within the framework of the "Proryv" (Breakthrough) Project. The pilot closed fuel cycle facility also includes spent fuel reprocessing module and fuel fabrication and refabrication module.

The 300 MW nuclear reactor will be constructed by Titan-2, a major construction contractor for Rosatom. It is scheduled to start operation in 2026.

According to the scientific director of the project and Russia's minister of atomic energy in the late 90s – early 2000s, Evgeny Adamov, the price of the construction of the BREST-OD-300 reactor will reach 100 billion Rubles (USD 1.39 billion). This price is higher than the original cost evaluation, which is partly due to the increased costs of raw materials like metals. A number of contracts related to the project have already been awarded to Rosatom companies. On May 13, 2021, Titan-2 received a 991.6 million Rubles (USD 13.3 million) contract for a stand for acceptance tests of the main circulation pump of the BREST-OD-300 reactor.

In his video address to the groundbreaking ceremony, IAEA Director-General Rafael Mariano Grossi called the reactor a step forward for the world nuclear industry. He highlighted that the "closed fuel cycle would reduce the amount of long live nuclear waste needed for future disposal" and the "fast reactor at a site containing all fuel cycle facilities would avoid the need for radioactive materials to be transported across any great distance".

Russian Nuclear Security has previously reported that in February of 2021 the SCC received a license for the construction from the Russian nuclear regulator, Rostechnadzor. Previous status reports and additional details on the development of the pilot closed fuel cycle facility are available in the July/August 2020 issue of the Russian Nuclear Security Update.

Sources:
1. Rosatom starts construction of unique power unit with BREST-OD-300 fast neutron reactor. June 8, 2021.
2. The Price of the Construction of the BREST Fast Reactor is Estimated to Be 100 Billion Rubles. June 8, 2021
3. Nuclear First – Work Starts on Russian Fast Neutron Reactor. June 8, 2021.
4. Procurement # 210225/0506/045. Implementation of the Project "Stand for the Acceptance Tests of the Main Circulation Pump of the BREST-OD-300 Reactor". May 13, 2021.