Operation of New Reactor in India Delayed

First criticality for the second unit at the Kudankulam nuclear plant in India will be delayed until this spring or summer.

The previous schedule had the reactor starting up for the first time in September. The chairman of India's Atomic Energy Commission told Indian media Thursday that unit 2 would achieve criticality by May or June. The same day, though, an anonymous executive with Nuclear Power Corp. of India told the Times of India that government approvals and other preparatory steps might not be ready before June.

Unit 1, meanwhile, is generating 400 megawatts, working toward its full capacity of 1,000 megawatts.

Russian firms supplied and helped to finance two VVER-1000 units at Kudankulam in the state of Tamil Nadu, according to the World Nuclear Association. The first unit was originally scheduled to come online in 2008 but started up in July.

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