After a 5,000-km sea trip, Russia’s pioneering floating nuclear power plant has reached its remaining vacation spot on the Arctic coast and will quickly ship megawatts and gigajoules of vitality to customers on land.
The Akademik Lomonosov was towed from Murmansk, a significant port metropolis in northwestern Russia, all of the method to the far japanese area of Chukotka, reaching a small city referred to as Pevek on Saturday. The journey lasted 22 days and required a few tow boats to maneuver the barge, which lacks its personal propulsion, and an icebreaker to ship the convoy safely by means of the chilly Arctic waters.
The floating power station was docked in Pevek at a pier built for it prematurely, which has all of the communications crucial to attach it to the native power grid and heating system. Some work remains to be required for integration, however operator Rosenergoatom says the plant will probably be operational earlier than the tip of the yr.
The ship is the primary in what Russia hopes will probably be a sequence of floating nuclear power vegetation, factory-ready to provide electrical energy and warmth to distant spots like Chukotka, the place cheaper options aren’t obtainable. Isolated islands and huge offshore oil and gasoline rigs are among the many potential purchasers. So are ports scattered alongside Russia’s Arctic coast servicing the North Sea Route, a waterway that Moscow pitches as a viable various to the Suez for maritime site visitors between Europe and Asia.
Pevek is one such outpost, however was chosen largely for the pilot deployment attributable to its distinctive vitality scenario. The complete space is serviced by two outdated power vegetation, one coal and one nuclear, which each should be decommissioned quickly. The floating generator will function a stopgap, permitting these amenities to be phased out and changed with one thing fashionable with out speeding.
Incidentally, Chukotka will for a whereas be the primary Russian area with two totally different nuclear power vegetation working concurrently as soon as the addition to its vitality system is operating. Usually, if extra electrical energy is required in an space, further reactors may be built on the identical plant to satisfy the demand.