Tamil Nadu

Maintenance has taken a beating at Kudankulam: Director

KKNPP site Director Kasinath Balaji (second from left), addressing media persons at Kudankulam on Saturday. Photo: A. Shaikmohideen  

Admitting that the maintenance of sensitive electronic gadgets in the safety systems of reactors and other hi-tech equipment of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KKNPP) have been affected in the wake of the ongoing projects, Site Director M. Kasinath Balaji said on Saturday that the skeletal staff he managed to transport to the site everyday with adequate protection were ensuring the health of these equipment.

Speaking to reporters at the KKNPP site as part of a media interaction programme, Mr. Balaji said that the entire workforce from Anu Vijay Township, where KKNPP technocrats and Russian engineers are staying, could not be sent to the site as the district administration was yet to give clearance. The maintenance was being carried out with just 80 to 90 personnel. On obtaining the administration's clearance, the support staff who had left the place would be brought back and NPCIL staff sent to the workplace to bring the reactors back to normality.

Asked how long he would be await the clearance and whether he would seek Central forces' security cover for the NPCIL staff, Mr. Balaji said: “We'll wait and let's hope for the best”.

He said that senior KKNPP technocrats were giving lectures in colleges underlining the safety of the reactors. “Moreover, pamphlets, explaining in lucid language the safety features of the reactors are being circulated among people.”

To sensitise reporters to the safety features of the KKNPP, they were taken around the first reactor to take a peek at the passive heat removal system (PHRS), passive hydro combiner, core catcher, four diesel generators for supplying power to the safety systems in case interruption of supply.

The ‘failsafe' safety system of the PHRS was demonstrated and reporters could feel the flow of atmospheric air into the coolant system automatically, without any external power, to cool the core.

Mr. Balaji said that the four diesel generators, each of 6.30 MW capacity, would be operated in case of disruption in supply from the grid at Abhishekapatti near Tirunelveli. “We've learnt a lot from the past experiences (pertaining to nuclear mishaps across the globe) and have incorporated futuristic safety systems. Hence the nuclear reactors of the KKNPP are the safest in the world.”

Station Director R.S. Sundar, Chief Engineers S.V. Jinna and B.C. Pathak and Project Director (Reactors 3 and 4) R. Banerjee were present.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2022 7:10:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/maintenance-has-taken-a-beating-at-kudankulam-director/article2622335.ece

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