Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Nuclear Power in Canada at World Nuclear Association updated Nov. 2012

Nuclear Power in Canada at World Nuclear Association updated Nov. 2012: http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/inf49a_Nuclear_Power_in_Canada.html I have posted this link here a few times, this is updated version last month: "Canada has developed its own line of nuclear power reactors, starting from research in 1944 when an engineering design team was brought together in Montreal, Quebec, to develop a heavy water moderated nuclear reactor. The National Research Experimental Reactor (NRX) began operation in 1947 at Chalk River, Ontario, where today the Chalk River Laboratories are the locus of much of Canada's nuclear research and development. The government established Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd (AECL) as a crown corporation in 1952 with a mandate to research and develop peaceful uses of nuclear energy. The National Research Universal (NRU) reactor was built at Chalk River in 1957. Today, NRU produces 40% of the world supply of molybdenum-99, the source of technetium-99 widely used for medical diagnosis, and cobalt-60 for cancer treatment.
AECL, in cooperation with Canadian industry, began developing the first Candu (Canada deuterium uranium) reactor in the late 1950s. Candu reactors use heavy water (deuterium oxide) as a moderator and coolant, and are fueled using natural uranium (as opposed to enriched uranium). The advantages of the Candu reactor are savings in fuel cost, because the uranium does not have to go through the enrichment process, and reduced reactor downtime from refueling and maintenance. These savings are partially offset by the cost of producing heavy water. A small (22 MWe) Candu prototype went into operation in 1962 at Rolphton, Ontario, 30 km upstream from the Chalk River facilities. A larger prototype – 200 MWe – began generating power at Douglas Point, Ontario, in 1967. It was the design basis of the first Indian PHWR power reactors, Rawatbhata 1 & 2.
The first commercial Candu reactors began operations in Pickering, Ontario, in 1971. Sixteen of Canada's 18 commercial reactors are located in Ontario (the others are in Quebec and New Brunswick). In 2008, 53% of Ontario's electricity production came from nuclear power. The Darlington plant which came on line 1990-93 experienced a major cost overrun in construction largely due to political interference.
The technology and design of Candu reactors have evolved through several generations, with the newest reactors the Enhanced Candu 6 (EC6, based on Qinshan in China), and the next-generation Advanced Candu Reactor (ACR-1000).
Today, there are 32 Candu power reactors in seven countries, as well as 13 'Candu derivative' reactors in India, with more being built. Export sales of 12 Candu units have been made to South Korea (4), Romania (2), India (2), Pakistan (1), Argentina (1) and China (2), along with the engineering expertise to build and operate them. Three of the Canadian units are undergoing major refurbishment.
In mid 2011 AECL sold its reactor division to SNC-Lavalin's Candu Energy subsidiary for C$ 15 million, with the Canadian government retaining intellectual property rights for the CANDU reactors, in the hope of future royalties from new build and life extension projects "while reducing taxpayers' exposure to nuclear commercial risks". Candu Energy will pursue new business opportunities in connection with existing CANDU reactors worldwide and new build opportunities with EC6 models and the third-generation ACR-1000 design. The government will contribute $75 million towards completing the EC6 development program. Candu Energy will complete the refurbishment projects at Bruce, Point Lepreau, Wolsong and Gentilly through subcontract service agreements with the Canadian government. About 1200 employees will transfer to Candu Energy.
As well as their use for electricity, Candu power reactors produce almost all the world's supply of the cobalt-60 radioisotope for medical and sterilization use."

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