Power Plant Operations
The first unit at the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant will begin producing energy in 2018, with all four units scheduled to come online by 2020. Before any nuclear unit becomes operational, there is a stringent process to be followed. Known as the commissioning phase, each unit is tested by a combined team from Nawah, ENEC and KEPCO. Once a unit is fully tested and declared ready, it will be handed over to Nawah to begin operations.
More than 700 different tests are conducted to ensure that each unit’s systems, processes and people are prepared for operations. Once these are complete, the UAE’s nuclear regulator, FANR, has to review and audit all pre-start up activities to ensure safety and compliance.
Once FANR issues the license to operate a nuclear reactor, Nawah can begin loading fuel into the reactor. The reactor’s power output is increased in stages and numerous tests are conducted before any unit reaches full power. When the unit is at its maximum capacity, it will then be allowed to operate for a period of time before a full plant handover is completed. At this stage, the Nawah Energy Company will take full control of the nuclear reactor unit and it will be declared as commercially operational.