There are 22 nuclear reactors operational in seven nuclear power plants in India under the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE). These power plants largely contribute to the supply of electricity to the national grids. Let's learn about one such major nuclear power plant in India- the Kaiga Atomic Power Station.
What is the Kaiga Atomic Power Station?
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station is India's third major nuclear power plant. It is situated in Kaiga, Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka state. The plant is operated by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL).
The first two Kaiga Atomic Power Station units were constructed under the Russian technology transfer. The reactor pressure vessel for Unit 1 was supplied by the Chelyabinsk Tube-Rolling Plant (Russia). BHEL manufactured the remaining engineering components for both units as part of their "Pressure parts" division.
Significance of Kaiga Atomic Power Station
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station is the first large-scale nuclear plant built in India. It is a two-unit pressurized heavy water reactor (PHWR) power station located in Kaiga, Kaveri River basin, near Karwar in Karnataka.
It was built by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL), a Public Sector Undertaking under the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) of the Government of India.
Safety Measures at Kaiga Atomic Station
Safety measures at the Kaiga Atomic Power Station include an emergency core cooling system and a core catcher. The emergency core cooling system (ECCS) is designed to cool the nuclear reactor in case of a power failure that might lead to overheating. The core catcher is a device that, in the event of an accident, would catch any fuel and other materials that would melt and drop down into the containment building.
There is also a backup system for cooling down the reactor if the ECCS does not work properly. This backup system uses borated water, which is stored in tanks around the plant and can be pumped into the reactor as needed.
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Important Facts about the Kaiga Atomic Power Station
- To date, the Kaiga Atomic Power Station has generated about 55 billion units of electricity, and it covers about 27% of Karnataka's total electricity requirement.
- Furthermore, Kaiga has been providing about 3.11% of the total electricity generated in India as well.
- The Kaiga Atomic Power Station has made a world record by generating 2.6 crore units of electricity since its continuous operations from 2018 with improved safety features. The plant is expected to be expanded to generate more electricity by 2026.
- The structure of the nuclear power plant consists of primary, secondary, and tertiary systems, which enable it to support the entire range of heat transfer loops like condensate, feed, and steam lines.
- The plant also houses an Emergency Response Centre (ERC) where trained professionals monitor all activities in real-time, 24x7.
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station is highly significant to the Indian nuclear program. This is one of the four major plants in the country. The other three are the Narora Atomic Power Station in Uttar Pradesh, Rawatbhata Atomic Power Station in Rajasthan, and two units at the Tarapur Atomic Power Station in Maharashtra. In recent years, it has been working to improve its safety measures in recent years, with an emphasis on letting the community know what steps are being taken to ensure their safety. Mock drills and exercises are done at regular intervals to train employees to handle any kind of emergency situation, including radioactive leakages and fires, etc.
FAQs on Kaiga Atomic Power Station
Q 1. Where is the Kaiga Atomic Power Station located?
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station is located in Kaiga, Uttara Kannada district in Karnataka.
Q 2. When was the Kaiga Atomic Power Station first operational?
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station first became operational in March 2000.
Q 3. Who operates the Kaiga Atomic Power Station?
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station is operated by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL).
Q 4. How much of Karnataka's electricity is produced by the Kaiga Atomic Power Station?
The Kaiga Atomic Power Station produces about 27% of Karnataka's electricity.
Q 5. What are the names of two major atomic power stations apart from the Kaiga Atomic Power Station?
Rajasthan Atomic Power and Tarapur Atomic Power Station are two major atomic power stations apart from the Kaiga Atomic Power Station.