In the USA, the commercial operation of the advanced Gen III+ Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear reactor began at the Plant Vogtle nuclear plant. Power unit №3 has been put into operation, Westinghouse reports.

“This historic achievement opens the door to a new era of clean and cost-effective nuclear power in America, based on the most advanced nuclear reactor technology available on the world market today. The AP1000 reactors at the Vogtle nuclear power plant became the first newly constructed nuclear facilities in the US in more than 30 years,” the message reads.

Unit #4 is now preparing for initial fuel loading, after successfully completing hot functional tests in record time in May. The transition to commercial operation is expected at the end of this year or early next year.

“The lessons learned and experience at the key sites at Vogtle, as well as the competencies and capabilities gained through our supply chain, fully prepare Westinghouse for the future introduction of new nuclear units. This will help us meet the challenges of climate change and energy security,” said the President and CEO of Westinghouse Patrick Fragman.

Westinghouse’s AP1000 technology is based on modular design and construction methods. It offers all the benefits of on-stream production with a global fleet of reactors and an advanced supply chain. By the end of this decade, 12 AP1000 reactors will be operating around the world.

The AP1000 units at the Vogtle nuclear power plant are generation III+ hydrogen-water reactors with fully passive safety systems and modular frame. They occupy the smallest relative area for each MWt of energy on the market.

China’s four AP1000 units are setting production records, and six more reactors are under construction. Poland recently selected the AP1000 reactor for its nuclear power program. Ukraine has made firm commitments to implement nine AP1000 units, and Bulgaria will build an AP1000 power unit at the nuclear power plant in the town of Kozloduy.

The technology is also being considered for implementation at numerous facilities in Central and Eastern Europe, the UK, India, and the United States.