Akkuyu NPP project discussed at the seminar for journalists in Ankara

09 April 2021, Ankara, Turkey. Rosatom State Corporation and AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC arranged a seminar on the Akkuyu NPP construction project for the national mass media of Turkey.

Journalists representing the leading Turkish printed and digital media outlets listened to the Director of the Rosatom Regional Center in Middle East and North Africa Alexander Voronkov, the First Deputy General Director of AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC, Director of NPP under construction Sergei Butсkikh, the member of the Governing Council of the Board of the Nuclear Power Engineers Association of Turkey Korcan Kayrın, the representatives of the French Assystem Engineering Company– the Senior Manager of the Project for construction supervision of nuclear facilities at Akkuyu NPP, Mr. Roger Larcher, and the Director of the Nuclear Energy Department, Mrs. Arzu Altay, as well as the young specialists of AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC - Yusuf Kılıç and Ozlem Arslan. Acting as the workshop moderator was a popular TV anchor, Mrs. Canan Yener Reçber.

Director of the Rosatom Regional Center in Middle East and North Africa, Alexander Voronkov, told to the journalists about the main trends in the Rosatom State Corporation activities, stated the Rosatom presence in the international market and went into detail on the Russian VVER 3+ generation technology and its references in the world. "The VVER-1200 project, chosen by Turkey for the implementation of the country's first nuclear power plant construction, is not only the flagship project of Rosatom in the international market, but also the most modern one. This type of reactor has incorporated the best safety practices that exist in the Russian and world nuclear industry, decades of evolutionary development of the VVER reactor line, so it is not surprising that this project attracts the attention of our foreign partners. The first reactor, built according to the VVER-1200 design, was put into operation in Russia at the Novovoronezh NPP back in 2017. Today, there are already five power units of this type operating in the world - four in Russia and one abroad. There is no doubt that with the commissioning of Akkuyu NPP, Turkey will become the owner of the most modern and safe nuclear power plant", the speaker said.

Deputy General Director of AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC, Director of NPP under construction, Mr. Sergei Butckikh, told about the milestones of Akkuyu NPP construction as well as the construction plans in 2021. He also particularly noted the high employment level of specialists in the construction of the first nuclear power plant in Turkey. "Participating in the project as of today are 11 thousand people, 80% of them are Turkish citizens, and 8 thousand people are involved in the NPP construction works. Over 12 thousand people will be engaged in the project at the peak stage of construction. When all 4 power units are in operation, the NPP staff number will be about 4 thousand people, including over 700 Turkish engineers", - Butckikh noted. He also emphasized that the process of Akkuyu NPP construction licensing is almost finalized: "We are looking forward to get the construction license for Unit 4 within this year. To achieve that the complete set of application documents was submitted to the Nuclear Regulatory Authority on May 12, 2020".

A member of the governing council of the Nuclear Power Engineers Association, Mr. Korcan Kayrın, has gone into detail on the social and economic effect of implementation of the NPP construction projects. According to the data represented by the speaker, today nuclear power generation covers over 10% of the world’s electricity demand, which for the European countries is 25%. "Nuclear power plants have the highest coefficient of the installed power use as compared to the other power generation types - over 90%. NPPs occupy comparatively small area, which makes it possible to use the territory and natural resources in the best way possible. Besides, the nuclear energy particularly can provide a transition to the carbon-neutral energy system and at the same time to ensure security of energy supply", - Kayrın said.

The representatives of Assystem company, an independent supervision organization on Akkuyu NPP main facilities, told the journalists about the NPP construction inspection process. "Assystem company has over 50 years of experience in nuclear industry in part of commissioning works, engineering, project management, construction supervision and inspection. Our work is built on the license base of Akkuyu NPP project - a set of international, Turkish and Russian legislation norms, standards and rules, strict compliance of which at production of materials and execution of construction and installation works makes it possible to provide the required level of nuclear safety", - Roger Larcher noted. His colleague, Mrs. Arzu Altay, provided the journalists with detailed information about the environment monitoring which is carried out continuously at the Akkuyu NPP construction site. According to requirements of the regulatory documents the Assystem specialists acquire data on the state of flora and fauna, underground waters, sea bottom sediments and many other site parameters.

Young engineers of AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC, graduates of Russian National Research Nuclear University MEPhI, Yusuf Kılıç and Ozlem Arslan, have told the journalists about the specifics of their study in Russia on the specialty of "Nuclear Power Plants: design, operation, engineering", have shared impressions on the work at the construction site of the first NPP in Turkey.

Yusuf Kılıç, Specialist of the Preparation and Performance of Repairs Unit: "Operational personnel training programs at all nuclear power plants are developed for several years in advance; any and all processes are modelled and calculated beforehand. For the present I work in the company about two years, however I succeeded to blend into the team and master all main working processes".

Radiation Safety Unit specialist Ozlem Arslan: "For the time of study in Russia I got profound academic background and a versatile education, repeatedly took part in technical tours and practical trainings at nuclear power plants, visited a factory where the reactor vessel and other components for Akkuyu NPP are manufactured, evidenced strict control measures exercised at production of each part and made sure that safety is of a primary concern at the nuclear industry enterprises".

During the workshop the exclusive screening of two episodes of Rosatom documentary project "Atoms for humanity" took place. The episodes feature the way nuclear technologies change people's life for the better, facilitate the development of cities and regions where nuclear industry enterprises are present.

At the end of the seminar journalists got detailed answers and comments to their questions during a Q&A session. 

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