Bushehr plant to be connected to national grid within 3 months: MP

April 11, 2011

TEHRAN – MP Kazem Jalali of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee has said that the Bushehr nuclear power plant will be connected to the national grid within three months.

“According to the latest reports, the first stages of connecting the Bushehr nuclear power plant to the national electricity network will begin in late April, and the plant will be fully connected to the national grid in midsummer,” Jalali said on the sidelines of a ceremony held in Shiraz to mark Iran’s National Nuclear Technology Day on Saturday.
The power plant, which is located near the port of Bushehr on the coast of the Persian Gulf, was launched in August 2010 as engineers loaded the first of 163 fuel rods into the reactor under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
On January 28, former director of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), Ali Akbar Salehi, announced that the Bushehr power plant will be connected to the national grid by February 20. He also said that the plant would be able to work at full capacity by mid-April.
However, later the power plant encountered technical problems and on a request by Russia fuel rods were unloaded from the reactor of the power plant for safety concerns.
Russia cited a breakdown of one of the reactor’s cooling pumps as the cause which necessitated the removal of fuel rods from its core.
In March, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, in a telephone conversation with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, promised that Russia will make every effort to make the Bushehr nuclear power plant fully operational at the planned time.
On Saturday, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi stated that the reloading of fuel into the core of the reactor has started.
It was planned that when Bushehr nuclear power plant was first connected to the national grid, the reactor would produce 400 megawatts of electricity and within two or three months it would reach 100 percent of its capacity and produce 1000 megawatts of electricity, which accounts for one-fortieth of the electricity output of the country.