Nuclear Power Corpn plans new safety norms for 18 plants

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on March 18, 2011 Published on March 18, 2011

Taking lessons from Japan's nuclear disaster, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd will incorporate in the next six months, new safety measures and operating procedures at its 18 nuclear power plants, an NPCIL official said on Friday.

Off the 18 plants, Tarapur 1 and 2, which were established in 1969, have boiling water reactors, similar to the Fukushima plants in Japan.

A committee of senior NPCIL and Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) officials has already been formed, for detail safety review of all the plants. Its report is expected in six months, sources in DAE told Business Line.

Depending on the committee's recommendations, NPCIL may have to incur additional expenditure for upgrading the plant safety, they said.

Talking to mediapersons here on Friday, Dr S.P. Dharne, Additional Director (Safety), NPCIL, said all operations in a nuclear power plant are codified. The nuclear plant operators have to abide by the codes and standard operating procedures.

Details being studied

As more minute details emerge from the Japanese accident, they would be studied and standard operating procedures during emergency situation would updated. This process will take six months, he said.

He said that NPCIL and other nuclear plant operators have very specific details about the past accidents at Chernobyl and Three Mile Island plants. Based on the details new lessons were drawn and they were incorporated in safety procedures of later Indian reactors.

Jaitapur plant

Mr C.B. Jain, NPCIL's Director for Jaitapur project, said that due consideration to events in Japan would be given to the plant design and new safely features in the European Pressurized Reactors would built in, he said.

Meanwhile India's nuclear regulator, the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB), said in a press release that there is no radiological impact on the country due to radiation leak from the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan.

Mr R. Bhattacharya, Director of Information and Technical Services, AERB, said that AERB is keeping a constant eye on the data being reported by the Indian Environmental Radiation Monitoring Network (IMERMON) from various locations across India.

The IMERMON network established by the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre provides on-line data on radioactive levels at 28 locations across the country and it is observed that there has been no increase in the radiation levels above normal in India.

Published on March 18, 2011
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