Nuclear energy will play a critical role in the use of sustainable energy in the UAE in the future

Nuclear energy will play a critical role in the use of sustainable energy in the UAE in the future

Enec begins work on fourth reactor

The UAE is implementing a peaceful nuclear programme to generate energy that will meet the highest international standards of safety, quality and performance

October 2015

Work on the construction of the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (Enec)’s fourth nuclear reactor has begun at Barakah.

With this, Barakah becomes the world’s leading nuclear energy construction area with four identical reactors being simultaneously set up in one site.

The construction licence for Units 3 and 4 was approved by the Federal Authority of Nuclear Regulation (FANR) in September 2014.

With the construction of four identical nuclear energy reactors now underway, Barakah surpasses nuclear construction sites in China, the US, the UK, Russia and other countries to become the largest project with simultaneous construction of identical nuclear technology in the world.

The Barakah Nuclear Power Plant’s four units will have a combined capacity of approximately 5,600 MW by 2020. In 2017, Enec’s first 1,400 MW unit is scheduled for completion.

Enec completed recently the installation at Barakah of two Unit 2 Steam Generators (SGs) manufactured by Doosan Heavy Industries - part of Enec’s Korean prime contractor consortium.

In a nuclear energy plant which uses Pressurised Water Technology, the steam generator acts as a heat exchanger where the water carrying the heat generated from the nuclear reaction is used to safely turn demineralised water into steam.

This is an in-built safety feature that keeps the water used in the reactor and the water used in the turbine segregated. The steam produced in the steam generator is then used to spin a turbine which drives a generator to produce electricity. 

During the event held to mark the start of construction of the fourth nuclear reactor, Suhail Mohamed Faraj Al Mazrouei, UAE Minister of Energy, visited the site for an update given by Enec CEO Mohamed Al Hammadi.

Al Mazrouei remarked: “Nuclear energy will play a critical role in the provision of sustainable energy to power the future of the UAE and, while the pace and sophistication of this historic programme continues to grow, I am consistently impressed to see Enec deliver its project to the highest international standards of safety, quality and performance. This approach ensures the long-term sustainability of the UAE’s peaceful nuclear energy programme.”

Al Hammadi stated: “We now have more than 18,000 staff at Barakah working diligently to safely deliver on our mission to connect safe, clean, reliable and efficient nuclear energy to the UAE in 2017. As our programme continues to gain momentum, this is a role we take on with great pride and responsibility, and as always, safety remains our overriding priority.

“Unit 1 is now 75 per cent complete. By 2020, Enec’s team will be responsible for the operations of four nuclear energy units that are expected to provide up to a quarter of our nation’s electricity needs and to save up to 12 million tonnes of carbon emissions every year.”

In 2017, Enec’s first unit is scheduled for completion, with additional units following at 12-month intervals. Unit 4 is set to commence commercial operations in 2020, pending regulatory reviews and licensing.

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