You probably heard somewhere in high school about a guy named Mikhail Lomonosov, Russian scientist from 18th century who discovered amongst many; conservation of mass in chemical reactions and atmosphere of Venus, blablabla…Do not fall asleep, story gets really interesting now.
After Mr. Lomonosov, Russians named their NUCLEAR POWER PLANT:
AKADEMIK LOMONOSOV, first FLOATING NUCLEAR POWER PLANT in the world.
BRIEF HISTORY OF AKADEMIK LOMOSOV
AKADEMIK LOMONOSOV had her life as a submarine first, then converted by Baltic Shipyard under “ROSATOM” (state owned atomic energy corporation) into floating power plant nuclear barge.
Construction of AKADEMIK LOMONOSOV started in 2009. in Baltic Shipyard and nuclear reactor was implanted after conversion in 2013.
Her permanent residence is PEVEK in Siberian Sea, Kamchatka region.
This power plant can provide energy for more then 70 000 households, but the interesting fact is that it can be converted into DESALINIZATION PLANT with capacity to produce 240 000 cubic meters of fresh water daily.
TECHNICAL FACTS OF AKADEMIK LOMONOSOV:
- non self-propelled vessel
- 144m long
- 30m wide
- draught 5.56m
- 21 500t
- accommodation for up to 70 people
- 2 X 35MV KLT-40C nuclear reactors
- 2 steam driven turbine units
- life span of 40 years
- turbines refuelled every 3 years
WHY TO USE FLOATING NUCLEAR POWER PLANT (FNPP) BESIDES RENEWABLE SOURCES OF ENERGY?
There are many that oppose nuclear energy usage. The world generally is turned to renewable sources of energy such as wind or solar energy. However, if we closely observe region where subject FNPP is located, we see that there are not so many alternatives available.
We can argue over pros and cons, but these are the facts:
For example, Siberian Arctic coast is an area where wind power is extremely low, annual average wind speed does not exceed 3-3,5 m/s and power from wind turbines cannot be generated if the wind speed is below 3m/s. Also, arctic climate with its low temperatures and almost constant ice causes that turbines hardly operate when covered with ice.
Learning from the previous experience:
The wind energy project took place in Novaya Zemlya and Yamal Peninsula and the results where only high cost of maintenance and low efficiency of wind turbines and inhabitants there use oil and coal when wind intensity is low.
Another renewable energy solution, solar panels, is also challenging as solar panels would be only operational for half of the year due to polar days / nights so oil and coal should be used again.
FNPP represents the only energy source that works uninterrupted and reduces dependence on oil and coal leading to emission reduction.
From the manufacturers, ROSATOM, they ensure us that technology is at highest safety standard meaning that malfunctions from Chernobyl & Fukushima were rectified with appliance of newest technologies and safety measures. They also ensure public that their fuel and waste management plan is made with close attention & with highest risk assessment rules applied.
ROSATOM works on their next projects, especially on construction of OFFSHORE FLOATING NUCLEAR PLANT (OFNP) which combines light water reactors and floating platforms similar those used in offshore oil and gas operations. Technology seems (as per scientists) more reliable as it is earthquake & tsunami proof. OFNPs would be anchored within 12 nm off the coast in a deep water (≥ 100 m), and connected to the grid via cables, with life span up to 60 years.
Written by SM, 10/05/2020