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Kakrapar Atomic Power achieves criticality

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    25th Jul, 2020
  • The third unit of the Kakrapar Atomic Power Project (KAPP-3) in Gujarat achieved its ‘first criticality’.
  • First Criticality refers to a term that signifies the initiation of a controlled but sustained nuclear fission reaction that generates energy.
  • Kakrapar Atomic Power Project consists of two 220 MW Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor and two IPHWR-700 (Indian Pressurized Heavy Water Reactor-700, a Generation III+ reactor developed from earlier 220 MW and 540 MW designs).
  • Kakrapar Atomic Power Project unit 3 is India’s first 700 MWe (megawatt electric) unit, and India’s biggest indigenously developed variant of the Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor (PHWR).
  • Kakrapar Atomic Power addresses the issue of excess thermal margins.
  • Until now, the biggest reactor size of indigenous design was the 540 MWe PHWR, two of which have been deployed in Tarapur, Maharashtra.
  • Pressurized Heavy Water Reactor uses natural uranium as fuel and heavy water (deuterium oxide D2O) as moderator. They are the mainstay of India’s nuclear reactor fleet.
  • Note: 'Thermal margin' refers to the extent to which the operating temperature of the reactor is below its maximum operating temperature.

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