True to tradition, hundreds of business relationships are established at ATOMIXPO. Photo: ATOMEXPO
THERE IS ENERGY – THERE IS A FUTURE
Could any of the Europeans have guessed at the beginning of the year that gas prices would rise 8 times?! But in the price of a kilowatt, the share of fossil fuels sometimes rises to 60%. Real – money in the oven! What can not be said about the atomic kilowatt. Although uranium has risen in price by 35% since the beginning of the year – from $95 to $128 per kilogram, that is not reflected in the rates. Because the share of uranium in it is only 3-5 percent.
Simple arithmetic and unexpected realities seem to restore health to even those who ended nuclear power after Fukushima. In October of this year, the German federal cabinet legalized the extension of the last three reactors until mid-April 2023. In Japan, they were thinking about building nuclear power plants. South Korea refuses to shut down the nuclear power plant. France and Great Britain want to increase the share of nuclear generation in their energy balance: by 22 and 24 GW respectively. The United States is extending the life of its nuclear power plants.
Clearly, the atomic renaissance is coming. Or “Atomic Spring” – this was the motto of the forum. The talks in Sochi were dedicated to her. They confirmed that today a healthy view of nuclear energy as a driver of development is beginning to prevail.
It would seem, why does it need Brazil, where there is a lot of sun and wind, where 9 out of 10 kilowatts are generated by hydroelectric power plants?
– Nuclear energy is another resource that expands the horizon, – said at the forum CEO ENB Par (the company responsible for operating nuclear power plants in Brazil) Ney Zanella dos Santos.
This year’s theme was the nuclear renaissance. Photo: ATOMEXPO
And now the Brazilians are considering the possibility of building low-capacity modular nuclear power plants and another nuclear power plant similar to the existing Angra power plant in remote areas of the country. If so, Brazil will add 10 GW of nuclear capacity by 2050. It has long appreciated the potential of nuclear energy. But countries that are far from it are paying more and more attention to it.
– The main point of growth in the next 20 – 30 years will be the countries – newcomers to the “nuclear club”, who want to bet on low-carbon resources. These are Bangladesh, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia. A number of African countries have signed the first agreements with Rosatom and are already thinking about the contours of future projects, – said on the forum Head of Rosatom Alexei Likhachev.
With the state-owned company building 23 power plants in 8 countries, there are already intergovernmental agreements on 34 units.
It is possible that the order book will be supplemented by newcomers. For example, at ATOMEXPO-2022, Rosatom agreed with Burundi and Nicaragua on cooperation to assess nuclear generation prospects in these countries. A memorandum was signed with Zimbabwe on the training of nuclear scientists in this African country.
Forum participants took virtual 3D walks around nuclear industry facilities. Photo: ATOMEXPO
BIG POSSIBILITIES SMALL POWER
Land-based low-power nuclear power plants of a modular type will appear in Russia. As Kirill Komarov, First Deputy General Director – Head of the Rosatom International Business Development Unit, said at the forum, it is expected that a permit will be obtained in early 2023 to establish such a station in the Ust-Yansky Ulus of Yakutia. The launch of the nuclear power plant is scheduled for 2028.
Now Rosatom is building a series of modernized floating power units that will provide energy for a copper mining project in the Baimskaya Ore Zone in Chukotka.
Rosatom will replicate small-capacity NPP projects in Russia and offer them to foreign customers.
GO TO ELECTRICITY!
Who needs electric cars? Perhaps today this question does not imply an unequivocal answer, but let’s not forget how quite recently and also with irony they asked: “Who needs Chinese cars?” No more irony now…
Therefore, Rosatom joined the process of creating the auto industry of the future in the country. And in 2025, mass production of batteries for electric vehicles will begin. This was announced by the chairman of TVEL JSC (part of the state-owned company Rosatom) Natalia Nikipelova on the forum. According to her, Rosatom has both enormous resources and competences for this. For example, the company RENERA, which is part of the state-owned enterprise, is engaged in energy storage systems. In addition, Rosatom enterprises can now produce about 60% of all electric vehicle components. In addition to traction batteries, these are localized electric motors, magnets made of rare-earth alloys, a base of microelements, polymeric and composite materials.
Rosatom is building a gigafactory in Kaliningrad that can provide 50,000 electric vehicles with energy storage annually. In addition, Rosatom plans to build three more factories.
It is important that the batteries are produced according to the needs of the automotive industry: removable or stationary, large or small. And any configuration. Sure, engineers and designers will one day come up with the best option, but for now, traction batteries for cars are going through a period that phone charging connectors have gone through.
Most importantly, future products will have a deep degree of localization. And the circle of potential consumers has already been defined.
A separate hall was set up for electric cars, vans, mining and tourist vehicles.
A picture: Mikhail GONCHAROV
“SOFT STONE” FOR METALLURGERS AND “LOGOS” FOR EXPORT
“Soft stone” is a translation of the Latin name for calcium. It is widely used in the production of high-strength steel for the aircraft and automotive industries. At the forum, Rusatom MetallTech and the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia agreed to create new capabilities for the needs of domestic metallurgy.
– In the long term, the new company will ensure the strategic safety of continuous cycle metallurgical production. We plan to create a modern production facility within 4-5 years, which will allow us to increase the output of calcium metal by 2.5 times compared to today. – reported Andrey Andrianov, general manager of Rusatom MetallTech.
The new company will use modern calcium electrolysis technologies, enabling a more advanced product to be brought to market.
And Rosatom will export the digital product of mathematical modeling and technical analysis “LOGOS”. Simply put, it is a set of software products that can provide the user with a description of how the product model developed on a computer will behave in reality. What industrial production needs.
LOGOS was created on the basis of years of development by Rosatom at the All-Russian Research Institute of Experimental Physics in the city of nuclear scientists Sarov. LOGOS will enter the international market in 2023.