The Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) successfully connected the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant Unit-2 (K-2) of 1145 Megawatts (MW) with the national grid Station.
In a statement, PAEC called it a “Pakistan Day gift” for the nation. He said the nuclear power plant (NPP) reached criticality in late February and was undergoing some safety tests and procedures before it could finally be connected to the national grid.
“Thanks to the grace of Allah Almighty, the K-2 1145 MW nuclear power plant has successfully synchronized with the national electricity grid,” said Federal Minister for Energy, Oil and Natural Resources Omar Ayub Khan in a tweet. The minister told that the current gross generation of the plant is 105 MW.
Moreover, PAEC aimed that K-2 is Pakistan’s first nuclear power plant with a production capacity of 1,100 MW and its addition to the national grid “will certainly help to improve the country’s economy”.
K-2 is using China’s HPR-1000 technology and a third-generation plant equipped with advanced safety functions that’s why it has a pressurized water reactor.
The development of the K-2 plant started on August 31, 2015, and its commercial operation will begin in April 2021 after undergoing several operational and safety tests.
K-2 is one of two similar nuclear plants under development located near Karachi and will open for commercial operation in late May this year. The other, K-3, is also nearing finishand should be operational by the end of this year.
The K-2 Unit is the first unit abroad to use Hualong One technology, grown in China and has completed the Hot Functional Tests (HFT). The Pakistani government awarded the contract for K-2 and K-3 units to China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) for safe and efficient power generation through nuclear reactors.
PAEC now operates six NPPs in the country – two located in Karachi and four in Chashma, in the Mianwali district. Previously, the collective generation capacity of all nuclear power plants operated by PAEC was around 1,400 MW.
The Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (K-2) will almost double the generation capacity of the country’s nuclear power plants, substantially improving the overall share of nuclear energy in the energy matrix.