The construction of the second reactor unit of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant starts today.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is going to Ishwardi to open the construction as the chief guest, while Deputy Prime Minister of Russian Federation Yury Ivanovich Borisov is scheduled to attend the inaugural ceremony as the special guest.
The construction of the first reactor unit began on November 30, 2017.
Two units -- 1,200 MWe VVER each -- are to be built at Rooppur under the Russian design giving priority to the highest safety measures in Pabna's Rooppur, some 160km from Dhaka. The VVER-1,200 reactor design has already been implemented at Novovoronezh Nuclear Power Plant II in Russia, say Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission experts.
“The government is determined to build the country's fist nuclear plant giving priority to safety. The first reactor building is now visible and core catcher is going to be set up for the safety of the plant,” Yeafesh Osman, minister of science and technology, told The Daily Star.
Shawkat Akbar, project director of RNPP, said though Bangladesh had huge limitations to set up the nuclear plant, the country was building the mega plant under the International Atomic Energy Agency's guidance.
The construction of the two units will continue simultaneously to produce electricity within the stipulated time, he said.
Unit-1 is scheduled to be commissioned in 2023, while the commissioning of the second unit is slated for 2024 to produce 2,400 megawatts of electricity from the two units, he added.
In February 2011, Rosatom, the state atomic energy corporation of the Russian Federation, signed an agreement with the Bangladesh government to build the project at Rooppur.
The initial contract for the project, worth $12.65 billion, was inked in December 2015.
Many people of Rooppur and the adjoining areas of the mega project get the opportunity to work in the project on a daily basis and they are gaining experience, said Ruhul Kuddus, in-charge of the project site office.