Barakah Unit 1 Hits 100 Percent Power

While testing continues, the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) has announced that its operating and maintenance subsidiary, Nawah Entergy Company (Nawah) has successfully achieved 100 percent of the rated reactor power capacity for Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant.

Barakah NPPENEC called the achievement a major milestone that brings the Barakah plant one step closer to commencing commercial operations, scheduled in early 2021.

One hundred percent power means that Unit 1 is generating 1400MW of electricity from a single generator connected to the UAE grid. This milestone makes the Unit 1 generator the largest single source of electricity in the UAE. The plant, designed and built by Korea Electric Power Corporation, is also the first for the Arabian Peninsula.

Nawah is responsible for operating Unit 1 and has been responsible for safely and steadily raising the power levels since it commenced the start-up process in July, and connection to the grid in August.  

Achieving 100 percent power is one of the final steps of the Power Ascension Testing (PAT) phase of the start-up process for Unit 1. During this period, the Unit 1 systems will be carefully examined, and any planned or corrective maintenance will be performed to maintain its safety, reliability, and efficiency prior to the commencement of commercial operations.

The Power Ascension Testing of Unit 1 is overseen by the independent national regulator – the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), which has conducted 287 inspections since the start of Barakah’s development. These independent reviews have been conducted alongside more than 40 assessments and peer reviews by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO), ENEC said.

Barakah One Company, ENEC’s subsidiary in charge of the financial and commercial activities of the Barakah project, signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the Emirates Water and Electricity Company (EWEC) in 2016 to purchase all of the electricity generated at the plant for the next 60 years. Electricity produced at Barakah feeds into the national grid in the same manner as other power plants, flowing to homes and businesses across the country.

Construction of Unit 2 at the plant is listed as 100 percent complete and is expected to be operational in 2021. As of July, Units 3 was 92 percent completed, while Unit 4 was 85 percent completed.

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