China to Start Construction of Generation IV Nuclear Reactor


Published Date : Aug 17, 2015

China is planning to start the construction of a Generation IV nuclear reactor with nearly 600 MWe capacity. The reactor is being touted as a Terrapower travelling wave neutron reactor.

The construction of the of the power demonstrative project, named Xipu fast neutron reactor, is set to start by the end of the year 2017, in the Fujian province of East China, Xu Mi, an academician working with the Chinese Academy of Engineering said. The project will be built using one of the 6 next-generation nuclear power setups developed for sustainable and cleaner energy.

The demonstrative neutron reactor for a nuclear power project with nearly 600 MWe or 600,000 kw capacity, will be regarded as a fourth generation reactor.

Xu, widely known as the father of fast reactors in the country, has said that the fast reactor technology will lead to an increased amount of energy generation from uranium as compared to the current levels between 1 to 60 percent, thus leading to an overall reduction in nuclear waste. 
Shanghai's daily China Business News has stated that the construction of the project is underway. Website of the World Nuclear Association showed that there are currently 6 technologies, including the 4 that fall in the fast reactors category, have been selected as fourth generation reactors. These generators will be deployed between the period 2020 and 2030.

 Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, is also engaged in the development of a fast reactor called the travelling wave generator via the company TerraPower, a company that he had founded in the year 2008. Bill Gates has visited China at least three times in the past few years for any possible cooperation in the field of nuclear power.

Gates met with Nur Bekri and Sun Qin on his last Beijing trip. Nur Bekri is a vice chairperson of the National Development and Reform Commission of the country and Sun Qin is the chairman of China National Nuclear Corp.