Putin takes look at technology of nuclear fuel production for nuclear power plants

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

ELEKTROSTAL, July 29 (Itar-Tass) -- Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has taken a look at technology of nuclear fuel production for nuclear power plants during his visit to the machine-building plant Elemash on Tuesday.

He was shown the whole technological chain – from production of “nuclear tablets” to heat clusters.

The plant’s director general Oleg Kryukov said “this is wholly our production - design, software and drawings; we buy parts abroad”.

The prime minister was interested to know why the plant had to resort to foreign help.

“We so far cannot provide ourselves with complete parts,” Kryukov replied.

He added that the production was one of the most modern in the world.

Its products are competitive on the world market.

Representatives of the company TVEL, whose subsidiary Elemash is, said nuclear fuel produced in the Moscow region is supplied for 57 nuclear reactors in 15 countries, including Hungary, Slovakia, Finland and the Czech Republic.

At the same time, the company plans enhancing competitiveness of its products.

The plant, whose current production lines occupy 71 hectares, is going to reduce this area to 21 hectares by 2020.

“Free land can be used for development of non-nuclear production, for example, machine-building,” the plant’s press secretary Valery Prokopyev said.

“At the cost of lease we can make nuclear fuel production more profitable,” he said.

The chief of the Federal Agency for Nuclear Power, Sergei Kiriyenko, said the “enterprise owns an area of 313 hectares, and over 7,000 people work at it”.

The president was shown heat clusters with “uranium tablets”.

In its energy effectiveness an eight-gram uranium tablet is equal to 50 barrels of oil, 40 tons of coal and 900 cubic meters of natural gas.

Kryukov said a fuel cassette worked for to ten years,

Putin was also shown the geography of supplies of nuclear fuel to other countries and told about advantages of Russia’s heat elements on the nuclear fuel markets.

Chiefs of the sector earlier adopted the task of developing this sphere.

One of the tasks of the program for the years to 2018 is to increase productivity with the help of the newest technologies.

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