Major components installed at UAE’s Barakah nuclear plant

Fourth reactor vessel and steam generators are the final to be installed, as per 2009 Prime Contract, positioning Barakah as a quality-driven site and one of the most efficient nuclear energy construction projects globally


The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (Enec) has made significant progress on the construction of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant in Abu Dhabi, UAE, with the installation of the steam generators for Unit 4, the final unit at the plant.

This milestone event coincides with the successful installation of Unit 4’s reactor vessel (RV), said a statement.

Jassim Mohammed Buatabh Al Zaabi, chairman of the Executive Committee Office and member of the Executive Council, led the delegation of the General Secretariat of the Executive Council (GSEC), which attended the commemoration ceremony in Barakah, the world’s largest nuclear energy construction site.

The delegation was hosted by chairman of the board of directors of Enec Khaldoon Al Mubarak; Enec CEO Mohamed Al Hammadi; Korea Electric Power Corporation (Kepco) chairman Ahn Choong Yong, as well as Enec, Nawah and Barakah One company executives.

During the event, the delegation took part in a signing ceremony, as well as tour of the site, which highlighted Enec’s focus on quality and safety during construction and nuclear operational readiness activities, in preparation for the units to start generating electricity.

Al Mubarak said: “The UAE’s  Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme supports the Abu Dhabi Plan by contributing to a diversified energy mix and sustainable, long-term economic growth. The installation of the final reactor vessel and steam generators, as per the 2009 Prime Contract, is a great achievement.

“I am proud of the unwavering commitment and professionalism demonstrated by the entire team. From our Emirati engineers to our international experts and Korean partners, the focus has remained on quality, safety and efficiency throughout this development process,” Al Mubarak added.

“I am proud to be here in Barakah today to witness this extraordinary milestone in the UAE Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme,” said Al Zaabi. “Nuclear energy plays a strategic role for the future of our nation, enabling economic and industrial growth, as well as careers in nuclear energy for Emirati youth. It will also support in securing the energy sector by diversifying energy sources to meet the rapid growth of the national economy.”

The delegation concluded the visit to Barakah with a signing ceremony inside Unit 4, where they observed the installation of the steam generators. Guests signed a specially prepared panel to commemorate this important milestone.

Al Hammadi said: “These achievements are showcasing our commitment to delivering a world-class nuclear energy programme, from construction through to operations.

"The successful installation of the final reactor vessel and steam generators for the Barakah Plant is testament to the dedication of our teams towards the previous milestones and for the upcoming plans.” Al Hammadi added.

Steam generators, which are similar in length to a tennis court, play a key role in the conversion of the energy generated by the nuclear fission reaction in the RV into electricity, which will eventually power homes and businesses throughout the UAE. The heat generated in the RV is transferred to the steam generator and turns water into steam, which is then used to spin a turbine and generate electricity.

The installation of the RV is a critical step in the continued progress and development of the UAE Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme. The RV is one of the most important and largest components in a nuclear energy plant. Weighing over 500 tonnes and measuring almost 15 m in height, the RV will eventually contain the controlled nuclear reaction that will generate the clean, efficient and reliable electricity that will feed into the UAE grid. It is also one of the many defence-in-depth barriers that ensure the safety of nuclear energy plants, said the statement.

The project at Barakah is progressing steadily. Unit 4 is now more than 52 per cent complete. Unit 1 is more than 96 per cent, while Unit 3 is more than 85 per cent, and Unit 3 is more than 75 per cent. Overall, construction of the four units is now more than 82 percent complete.

All four units will deliver clean, efficient and reliable nuclear energy to the UAE grid, pending regulatory reviews and licensing. When the four reactors are completed, the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant will save up to 21 million tons of carbon emissions each year, the statement added.


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