Innovative and mundane

Kakrapar-3 PHWR achieves first criticality

Unit 3 of the Kakrapar nuclear power station in Gujarat state, western India, achieved first criticality on 22 July at 09.36 local time, the country’s Department of Atomic Energy confirmed.

First criticality means the plant achieved a controlled, self-sustaining nuclear fission chain reaction for the first time.

Kakrapar-3 is a first-of-its-kind indigenous 630-MW (net) pressurised heavy water reactor unit designed by Indian scientists and engineers. The DEA said the plant’s components and equipment have been manufactured by Indian industries and construction undertaken by Indian contractors.

Prime minister Narendra Modi congratulated Indian nuclear scientists for achieving criticality at Kakrapar-3.

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