Hinkley Point C ‘s first reactor is ready for delivery
This Hinkley Point C reactor is the first nuclear reactor to be built for a British power station in over three decades.
The reactor was built in France by Framatome. It is contained in a reactor pressure vessel, which is a 13 metres long, 500-tonne, steel cylinder that contains the nuclear fuel, as well as the chain reaction required to produce heat. The heat is then used to create steam that is under pressure, for the world’s largest turbine. The centre of the reactor will have an average temperature of around 300°C and can withstand five times more pressure than a submarine does at regular operating depths.
Hinkley Point C will have two pressure reactors. Each will contribute to powering approximately three million British homes. The reactors are designed to run continuously between refuelling, or for 18 months at a time. The Engineering teams have spent 80,000 total hours on its engineering and construction.
The completion of this first reactor closely follows progress on the construction of the building that will house it, in Somerset, southwest England. It also makes a key milestone in the Hinkley Point C construction process. Once completed, this nuclear plant will offset 600 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions over its expected lifetime of 60 years.