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Nornickel and Rosatom to look into SMR potential in Norilsk

Nornickel and the State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom will consider the possibility of setting up low-capacity nuclear power plants to supply energy to the Norilsk Industrial District. The agreement of intent and cooperation to build small nuclear power plants has been signed by Nornickel’s President Vladimir Potanin and Rosatom’s Director General Alexey Likhachev.

Isolated from the Unified Energy System of Russia, the Norilsk Industrial District’s energy system needs to meet enhanced reliability requirements. With its strategic development plans, Nornickel is looking into potential options to construct new generating capacities, considering small power plants as one of the viable pathways.

Rosatom actively focuses on small nuclear power plant projects that can meet the decentralized energy needs of remote territories in the north of Russia. Under the new agreement, the two companies will evaluate potential options, identify a priority site to host the onshore NPP, its configuration and infrastructure required for the plant construction and operation, and will also agree on the best model to implement the project.

As part of our partnership, we plan to study the needs of the Norilsk Industrial District and select the most suitable project for power supply. A high-tech project of a low-capacity nuclear power plant based on the latest RITM-400 reactor unit may be considered as a priority. Our low-capacity projects offer a reliable source of electricity with a long-term predictable tariff for consumers. In addition, nuclear power can make a significant contribution to the fight against climate change due to the absence of CO2 emissions during power generation, which is extremely important for the northern territories of our country. All of these advantages make low-capacity nuclear power plant technologies in demand for large industrial consumers who take a responsible approach to the choice of energy supply sources for their production facilities and territories of presence.

—Alexey Likhachev

RITM-400 is a pressurised water reactor with a planned capacity of 80 to 90 MW. The reactor is being developed by OKBM Afrikantov, a nuclear engineering company that is part of Rosatom Group. Other potential applications incude powering icebreakers.

MMC Norilsk Nickel is a diversified mining and metallurgical company, the world’s largest producer of palladium and high-grade nickel and a major producer of platinum and copper. The company also produces cobalt, rhodium, silver, gold, iridium, ruthenium, selenium, tellurium and other products.

The main production units of Norilsk Nickel Group are located at the Norilsk Industrial District, on the Kola Peninsula and Zabaykalsky Krai in Russia.


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