Enec completes vast inner wall at UAE nuclear reactor

The UAE's Barakah Unit 1 on track as it installs an anti-radiation leakage mechanism.

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The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation has completed the installation of the vast inner wall of the reactor building under construction in Barakah.

Enec installed the containment liner plate yesterday in the reactor containment building. It is one of a number of safety mechanisms at the plant to avoid leakage of radiation.

The 2,000-tonne cylindrical structure, which is nearly 60 metres high and 45 metres in diameter, was constructed and installed in 19 stages over the past nine months. The process involved more than 420,000 man hours, Enec said.

“We are pleased with the safe and successful installation of this major structure,” said Mohamed Al Hammadi, Enec’s chief executive. “The team has carried out the entire process, prioritising safety and quality at all times.”

Barakah Unit 1 is one of four APR-1,400 megawatt reactors being built in the Western Region. It will take five years to complete, with commercial operations starting in 2017, pending regulatory approval. By 2020, with four plants online, the UAE is scheduled to receive up to a quarter of its electricity needs from nuclear energy.

Enec will next week host the New Nuclear International Conference at the Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi from Monday to next Thursday. The conference will bring together nuclear energy leaders from around the world.