1 September 2021

On August 31, 2021, another key event took place at the construction site of the multipurpose fast neutron research nuclear reactor MBIR: “The installation of the reactor shaft equipment has been started.” A floor slab was installed in the base of the reactor.

This was a particularly complex project involving use of heavy machinery, a crane with a lifting capacity of 1,200 tons. The slab was put in place in conditions of zero visibility for the crane operator, at a distance of 63 meters (boom reach) from the crane. The work was carried out without incident due to the professionalism of the crane operator and the entire team at the site of the Research Institute of Atomic Reactors. The crane lifted the slab, moved it smoothly and lowered it into the prepared reactor shaft at an elevation of -5.5 meters.

The installation of a floor slab in the base of the reactor shaft marks the start of a new stage in the construction project paving the way for the installation work phase, which is expected to begin in the fall of 2021, culminating eventually in installation of the reactor pressure vessel.

“The Director General of Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation has scheduled the physical start-up of the facility for 2026, and the power plant for 2027 – a year ahead of the initial timeline. We are keeping ahead of schedule. This event could be praised as a new victory, achieved at the construction site under the MBIR project, because the installation of the slab is ahead of the schedule (it was planned for October 2021).

Thanks to the well-coordinated work of the contractor under the leadership Gennady Sakharov, Director for Capital Investments, State Construction Supervision and State Expertise of Rosatom State Corporation, and the members of the ASKAO Construction Consortium, the supply of components to the site and construction works are proceeding smoothly,” noted Sergey Kiverov, Deputy Director for Facilities under Construction – Head of the Directorate for the Construction of Facilities of the INR MBIR, “Of course, high-tech innovative solutions and advanced management practices are essential to advance the project effectively on short notice”.

The MBIR project employs innovative construction methods, such as Building Information Modeling, lean manufacturing, the integrated cost management system Total Cost Management Nuclear Construction (TCM NC).

In September 2021, full-scale application of integrated remote monitoring tools at the MBIR project will begin, including high-resolution satellite imagery, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) imagery and laser scanning.

The establishment of a construction consortium for the MBIR project was crucial to make a qualitative leap forward and to contuse steady progress towards achieving the objective, because it united highly professional contractors for all major types of work, and included representatives of the insurance, banking and leasing sectors.

An outstanding contribution to the project advance was to organize the All-Russian Student Construction Project “Atoms For Peace-MBIR” at the site in Dimitrovgrad on the proposal of Rosatom Director General Alexey Likhachev, which concluded with the installation of the floor slab, on August 31, 2021. More than 200 students from 12 regions of Russia contributed directly to the event of historical significance for the MBIR project. In July and August, under the leadership of the general contractor of the project and Rosatom’s strategic partner, Orgenergostroy, JSC, the young people gained and honed construction skills. They did concrete, ancillary, reinforcement, land, carpentry, carpentry and general construction works, were trained as engineers, took part in works at others construction sites of the Research Institute of Atomic Reactors, and renovated the student residence of Dimitrovgrad Engineering and Technological Institute of the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI.

“It is not the first year that Rosatom initiates student construction projects and actively attracts the younger generation to construction projects in the nuclear industry,” said Milan Bratukhin, commander of the All-Russian Student Construction Project “Atoms For Peace-MBIR”. “All our guys went through a fairly strict selection (academic success, personal qualities, qualifications and experience of participating in student construction projects at other sites). On behalf of the All-Russian Student Construction Project, I would like to say, that we are pleased to actively participate in such a landmark construction project as MBIR, which is of great importance to our nation and for the scientific development in general. We have gained a unique experience of working at a construction site of world importance and undoubtedly will carry the memories of this summer through many years. I think that for some of the guys, thanks to the excellent organization, this construction site will become the first step on the ladder to an interesting construction career."

Ekaterina Zagainova, Director of the Youth All-Russian Public Organization “Russian Student Detachments” (strategic partner of Rosatom and organizer of youth work projects), in turn, expressed her deep gratitude to Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation and Orgenergostroy, JSC, as well as to the government of the Ulyanovsk region and the town of Dimitrovgrad for a warm welcome, providing comfortable living accommodations and safe working conditions, and opportunities for students to apply their knowledge in practice.

Source: CEMCP Rosatom

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