Rosenergoatom and the Kirov Factory have signed a memorandum of cooperation on marine nuclear energy infrastructure projects, including the construction of floating nuclear power plants.
The signing took place on 24 November, according to an Interfax report, and involved Rosenergoatom’s head of directorate for construction of floating nuclear power plants Sergei Zavyalov and the Kirov Factory’s general manager George Semenenko.
Zavyalov noted that plans existed at the state level for the construction of at least seven floating nuclear power plants by 2020, with a decision to move ahead with the construction of the second plant potentially coming as early as 2012.
A preliminary agreement was reached during discussions between Kirov Factory and Rosenergoatom, stating that production facilities and port infrastructure are to be set up at the Kirov Factory site during 2012, so that it is ready to take orders by 2013. Investment costs for this are expected to total about RUB 350 million ($11 million).
Kirov Factory daughter company, Kirov Energomash, is set to become the major non-nuclear contractor on future floating nuclear plant projects and is already planning to recruit as many as 470 new staff. Currently able to supply design, engineering and production services as well as non-standard metal support fittings, it expects to be able to supply up to 50% of components for future floating plants - including turbines and heat exchangers.
On the subject of Russia's first floating nuclear power plant, Akademik Lomonosov, Zavyalov pointed out that while the time frame for finishing construction had been pushed back by up to 20 months, this was outside of Rosenergoatom's control. The vessel was seized by the Court of Arbitration of St Petersbug in August as part of bankruptcy procedings against the Baltiysky Zavod shipyard, which as a partner in construction was also in possession of the ship. The shipyard's owners claimed not to have received all the payments they were owed for the craft.
Interfax reported Zavyalov as saying that the finance for this project had now been restored. He revealed that the cost of building Akademik Lomonosov was approximately RUB 16 billion ($525 million) in 2010 amounts, but costs were expected to fall for subsequent units.