M A I N   N E W S

First N-reactor Apsara to be upgraded
Shiv Kumar
Tribune News Service

Mumbai, January 29
Apsara, the first nuclear reactor to function from Indian soil, is all set to undergo a major upgrade, according to sources in the nuclear establishment.

Commissioned on August 4, 1956, Apsara is one of the oldest functioning nuclear reactors in the world. Sources say a number of crucial parts in the reactor are showing signs of ageing and need to be replaced. Sources say feasibility studies for upgrading the reactor are nearly complete.

When the upgrade is completed in the next few years, Apsara will have more powerful reactors with its capacity doubled from one megawatt to two megawatts.

Tests pertaining to the reactor’s ability to withstand earthquakes have already been carried out. Seismic tests have successfully been performed on the swimming pool reactor building, which houses the nuclear reactor, says sources.

“The shake table tests of the Apsara reactor building model have been successfully carried out and significant reduction in its response was observed,” an official said.

The other research reactor, Cirus, was generally operated at 20 mw with the availability factor of 90.2 pc. However, reactor power was raised to higher levels when required, he said while elaborating on the performance of research reactors at Trombay.

If and when India signs the nuclear deal with the US, the Cirus reactor, commissioned after Apsara, will be decommissioned. Apsara, which was originally built to run on imported fuel, will be retooled to run on indigenous fuel so that it can be classified as a strategic project and therefore out of the purview of international inspectors.

The Indian nuclear establishment has decided to keep both Apsara and Cirus outside the purview of international inspectors for strategic reasons.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |