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    The Indian contribution to the design of units 5 and 6 of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project (KNPP) in Tamil Nadu will equal that of its Russian makers, a senior Russian official has said.

    According to Vladimir Angelov, director for projects in India, ASE Group (the engineering division of Rosatom), localisation at KNPP is aimed in three spheres: design, hardware equipment and transfer of know-how.

    “From the viewpoint of the design work of the units 3 and 4, in comparison with units 1 and 2, the contribution of the Indian side in the design process is twice as high than for units 1 and 2. I can’t say the exact percentage of the contribution, but this would be some 30-40 per cent in the design of the buildings and structures,” Angelov told IANS here.

    For units 5 and 6, Russia envisages a spike in Indian contribution by an additional 10 per cent.

    “We formulate the list of specifications of the requirements for the Indian side to find the suppliers; nevertheless, we have to coordinate. The Indian side should get the approval of the Russian side for the supply. As for units number 5 and 6, we are looking to increasing Indian contribution by an additional 10 per cent,” he said.

    “In accordance with our plans, it would be a 50:50 contribution for units 5 and 6,” he added.

    In terms of hardware equipment for units 3 and 4, India’s contribution has also shot up. “In relation to the hardware equipment for units 3 and 4 in comparison with units 1 and 2 the contribution of the Indian side in the supply of the equipment has also grown. As far as units 3 and 4 are concerned, there are new experiences which both sides are gaining. For example, we are supplying some parts of the hardware which is designed by the Indian side. The buildings and structures will be designed by the Russian side, but the supplies will be made by the Indian side,” Angelov said.

    Construction of Kudankulam NPP is the largest joint Russian-Indian project in the energy sector. The first two 1,000 MW units are currently operational at Kudankulam. Four more are in the pipeline.

    The Power Unit 1 of the Kudankulam NPP was connected to the grid on October 22, 2013, and began commercial production a year later. The second unit was connected to the grid on August 29, 2016.

    India and Russia signed an inter-governmental agreement in December 2008 for Kudankulam’s units 3 to 6. The ground-breaking ceremony for construction of units 3 and 4 was performed earlier this year.

    The third direction for localisation revolves around transformation of know-how of production experience to the Indian manufacturers.

    “We are just taking the first steps in this direction. There are several items of the equipment of the reactor island (reactor installation itself) and we work in involvement of Russian manufacturers to transform the know-how of the production experience to the Indian manufacturers, including the supervision of such transformation. Up to now, the list of such equipment is not approved, but I can say for sure that they would be equipment of pretty high class of safety, up to the class of safety,” he added.

    (Sahana Ghosh was in Moscow at the invitation of Rosatom to cover the 11th International Public Forum-Dialogue “Nuclear Energy, Environment, Safety – 2016”)

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