The first power unit of the Belarusian Nuclear Power Plant has been connected to the grid and supplied electricity to the Belarus power system. The unit features Rosatom’s flagship VVER-1200 reactor, a tried and tested latest generation (III+) technology with 3 power units up and running in Russia. It is a backbone of the Rosatom export order book consisting of 36 units across 12 markets, including Finland and Hungary.

Rosatom Director General Alexey Likhachev said:

“The delivery of the first ‘nuclear’ kilowatt-hours of electric energy into Belarus’s unified energy system is a historic event that marks the beginning of the republic’s nuclear [power] era. This was made possible by the efficient long-term efforts of a large team of Belarusian and Russian specialists. Undoubtedly, there is still a lot of work to be done before the unit is put into commercial operation, but we can already say that, as the first Russian-designed III + generation nuclear power plant to be built outside of Russia, Belarusian NPP is a success”.

The first nuclear power plant in Belarus is based in Ostrovets, Grodno region, comprising two VVER-1200 reactors of 2.4 GW of total capacity. Currently, three reactors of this type are successfully operating in Russia: two at the Novovoronezh NPP and one at the Leningrad NPP. Once fully completed, the plant is expected to supply about 18 bn kWh of low-carbon electricity to the Belarus national grid every year.

The safety system of the plant has been fully endorsed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which has concluded, that “the plant’s design parameters accounted for site-specific external hazards, such as earthquakes, floods and extreme weather, as well as human-induced events” and that “measures have been taken to address challenges related to external events in light of lessons from the Fukushima Daiichi accident”.