Construction of the infrastructure for all of the three units of Turkey's first nuclear power plant Akkuyu is carried out according to the plan, Anastasia Zoteeva, general director of Akkuyu Nuclear told Anadolu Agency (AA).
"Works are being carried out in all three units at the same time," Zoteeva said in an exclusive interview with Anadolu Agency.
She said that much effort is being made for the completion of the first unit of the plant by 2023, the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Turkish Republic, in line with the agreement that both the Turkish and Russian presidents made.
"We have recently completed the foundation of the turbine building and installed the core catcher. Inside the protection building, we are installing the second layer of the inner protection cover," she detailed.
This year’s plan includes elevating the outer walls up to 26 meters, which will almost extend to the upper level of the reactor building.
This work will enable the welding of the main circulation pipeline by August next year after the reactor vessel has arrived onsite and is installed, she explained.
"To complete all these works at the 'core' of the plant, we will need to focus and gather all our energy," she added.
On progress of the second unit, Zoteeva said the foundation plates for both the reactor and turbine building are near completion with plans in place to finish the core catcher assembly process in the autumn period, which she said has already been completed for the first unit.
She said that for the third unit, they have begun preparations to lay the foundation.
“We will begin the installation of the foundation plate immediately after we get the construction license. We plan to complete these by the end of this year," she said.
- Construction works continue during outbreak
Zoteeva said that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak did not disrupt work at the plant. Special security measures were taken to stop the spread of the outbreak on-site with the checking of temperatures at the site entrance along with the provision of protective equipment.
"Among the more than 6,000 people working on the site every day, only one case was detected," she said.
"We managed to keep the situation under control. Despite comprehensive security and quarantine measures, work continued. Construction was not stopped even for a single day. We have made a lot of effort for this and our efforts have been successful," she added.
Reporting by Sezgin Pancar
Writing by Firdevs Yuksel