In a move to ramp up the nuclear power production in the country, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the plans for construction of 10 units of indigenous Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors (PHWR) on 17 May, 2017.
The 10 indigenous nuclear reactors will have a total installed capacity of 7000 MW, which is more than the country’s entire current capacity of 6,780 MW. Each reactor will have a capacity of 700 MW. This move will result in a significant augmentation of power generation.
This is the first-of-its-kind approval, where 10 nuclear reactors have been cleared in one go. At present, there are 22 operational nuclear power plants which have a total capacity of 6,780 MW. Of this, 18 reactors use heavy water.
The PHWRs will have indigenous but the latest technology, and will come up in fleet mode as a fully homegrown initiative which will help produce clean energy. The project will be developed under ‘Make in India’ flagship projects.
The Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) will set up the 10 PHWRs. It has designed and developed the indigenous 700 MW PHWRs, with support from other units of the Department of Atomic Energy.
The 10 nuclear reactors will come up at Mahi Banswara in Rajasthan; Chutka in Madhya Pradesh; Gorakhpur in Haryana and Kaiga in Karnataka.
The move will help domestic companies in attracting manufacturing orders of close to Rs 70,000 crore. The project will create more than 33,400 employment opportunities, both direct and indirect.
Another 6,700 MW nuclear power reactors will come on stream by 2021-22 through projects which are presently under construction. Once completed, they reactors under construction and the 10 new reactors, the installed nuclear power capacity in the nation would reach 20,480 MW.