Fukushima-like accident can be avoided at Kudankulam: Kalam | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Fukushima-like accident can be avoided at Kudankulam: Kalam

delhi Updated: Nov 07, 2011 20:54 IST

Highlighting the safety features of the Kudankulam nuclear plant, former President APJ Abdul Kalam on Monday said even a Fukushima-like accident can be avoided in the coastal project in Tamil Nadu.

"Kudankulam plant has installed 154 Hydrogen recombiners across the plant which can absorb any leaked hydrogen and prevent any structural damage," Kalam, who visted protest-hit nuclear power project yesterday, said addressing international nuclear scientists in New Delhi.

Sharing his experiences from Sunday's visit, he said Kudankulam plant plans to have a separate control unit for each of the reactors, to prevent cascading effect of reactor instability.

In the case of Fukushima, one of the primary reasons for structural collapse was the explosion in the hydrogen which got out of control due to heat generated by the failure of providing continuous power supply to the spent fuel complex, he said.

Kalam was making the inaugural address at the 21st International Conference on Structural Mechanics in Reactor Technology (SMiRT-21) in New Delhi.

On Germany's decision to give up nuclear power by 2022, Kalam said it was a power surplus developed nation which could afford to lose a few plants.

"More importantly, Germany has completely exhausted its nuclear resources. Thus, nuclear energy never fits into their goal of energy independence," Kalam said.

Making a case for pursuing nuclear energy, he said India was a leader of the new resource of nuclear fuel -- Thorium --which is considered as a fuel of the future.

Kalam said the most advanced safety feature in the Kudankulam plant is the installation of the Passive Heat Removal System (PHRS) which is latest in technology to ensure rapid cooling of the reactor in the event of a reactor problem.

The PHRS is a unique steam recirculating system which can continue to cool the plant in the event of the failure of AC power and even when the worst possible scenario of coolant malfunction occurs, without leaking any radiation in the atmosphere.

He said the plant has been designed to withstand earthquake up to a stress of six on the Richter scale with an acceleration of 0.15g and have been tested up to 0.6g.

The structure of the plant has been made with the highest safety standards which doubled containment and hermetically sealed, Kalam said.

To counter any risk from Tsunami and cyclones, the plant is elevated, to a minimum height of six metres (pump house) and the auxiliary diesel sets are at a height of 9.3 metres with a four time redundancy, Kalam said.

Moreover, the diesel generators are programmed to start automatically in the event of power failure and would continue to run for minimum period of 30 minutes without any human intervention.