National, Front Page

Nuclear dream comes true

Published : 29 Sep 2023 10:18 PM | Updated : 30 Sep 2023 01:21 PM

Bangladesh entered the global nuclear club as the first consignment of nuclear fuel arrived at the plant site on Friday.

Uranium arrived in Bangladesh from Russia on Thursday and reached Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant (RNPP) amid highest security measures with joint escort by the personnel from the Bangladesh Army, Police and Rapid Action Battalion (RAB).

Bangladesh now becomes 34th nuclear power country.

According to experts and officials concerned, Uranium can generate power at a lower cost of Tk 4.5 only per kilowatt in an eco-friendly manner. 

The sources said, the Government of Bangladesh and the Government of Russian Federation are jointly implementing the RNPP, the country’s first ever nuclear power plant project with the latest technology. With the highly efficient wastage treatment system, the RNPP has the least probability of nuclear mishap.

An expert well conversant and having long experience of working in the nuclear sector in Russia said the RNPP is being implemented with adequate measures for wastage treatment for averting any mishap.

The project is being implemented by applying 3.54 generation technology where China used the second generation technology and Chernobyl in Russia used the 1st generation technology.    

He said with the highest security measures with the latest technology, the probability rate of any nuclear accident is one by one million.

The total cost of the RNPP is estimated at Tk 11,30,92 crore. Russian government will provide Tk 910,40 (90 percent of the total amount) as loan and Bangladesh government will spend the rest of the amount.

According to official sources, Director General of the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom Aleksey Likhachev will hand over the fuel officially to the project authorities in the Rooppur project on October 5.

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Russian President Vladimir Putin are expected to virtually join the function.

Besides, the trial of power generation is expected to start in next November or in the first half of December.

The fuel was produced at the Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plant (NCCP) in Russia, a subsidiary of Rosatom's fuel manufacturing company Tevel.

Rosatom as a Russian contractor has been engaged in building the 2400 MW RNPP having two units with a capacity of 1200 MW each.

According to project officials, the government is expecting to commission the first unit of the RNPP in September next year and second unit in the middle of 2025.

According to sources, a special flight from Russia carrying the consignment of fresh nuclear fuel arrived on Thursday afternoon. 

Later, the consignment of uranium started for RNPP at Ishwardi in Pabna on Friday morning and reached there at 1:20pm. 

Akbar Ali Munshi, superintendent of Pabna police, said that the first consignment of uranium was transported here around 1:00pm on Friday.

He said the motorcade carrying the uranium had to stop at Gazipur due to a slight mechanical fault, but resumed the journey around 7:00am after it was fixed.

An additional number of law enforcement agencies were deployed on the Dhaka-Pabna Highway and check posts were also set up at important points as part of the security measures, the SP said, adding that vehicular movement on the highway was also kept suspended.

Akbar Ali, however, said the vehicles plying the highway were asked to ply the alternative Aricha-Kazirhat routes.