World companies discuss nuclear power prospects at Astana EXPO in Kazakhstan

Nuclear fuel tank

ASTANA (TCA) — The pavilion “World of Nuclear Energy” was presented at the international exhibition EXPO-2017 in Astana on June 10.

The pavilion “World of Nuclear Energy” was created jointly with partners of Kazakhstan’s national atomic company Kazatomprom, the world leaders in the nuclear industry – Rosatom, Cameco and Areva. Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Bakhytzhan Sagintayev visited the atomic pavilion and got acquainted with the exposition, which clearly shows all the latest achievements of the nuclear industry, Kazatomprom said.

The main event of the first working day of the atomic pavilion was panel session on the topic “Nuclear energy – future energy”. The event was attended by top managers of leading companies of the world nuclear industry — Cameco (Canada), AREVA (France), CGN (China), Rosatom (Russia), and Centrus Energy Corp.

Askar Zhumagaliyev, Chairman of the Board of the National Atomic Company Kazatomprom, said in his speech: “Nuclear power is a reliable, environmentally friendly energy of the future, which, thanks to the absence of harmful emissions, will help humanity solve climate change problems. According to experts’ forecasts, the growing demand for electricity in the future will be covered largely by nuclear power.”

The head of Rosatom, Alexei Likhachev, said the nuclear industry is key element of cooperation between countries: “No major project, such as the creation of a nuclear power plant, is purely national. It is always a compilation of achievements, the best technological solutions from a number of countries. And in this, an important component of the world nuclear industry is its consolidation.”

To date, two-thirds of the world’s electricity generation is made up of hydrocarbons. As a result of their use, the volume of annual harmful emissions into the atmosphere is 13.5 billion tons. By 2030, China intends to increase the share of non-fossil energy sources to 15 percent of primary energy resources.

“It is necessary for the global nuclear community to have common aspirations for further exchange of experience in nuclear energy,” said Chairman of the Board of Directors of CGN He Yu.

“The nuclear industry is growing all over the world. 10 reactors were launched in 2016. 57 are during the construction phase. We are moving in the right direction,” President of Cameco, Tim Gitzel said when outlining the prospects for nuclear energy.

The President of AREVA Philip Knoche said that the high level of safety and environmental friendliness of the nuclear industry is provided by modern technologies. “Here in Kazakhstan together with Kazatomprom we use the most advanced technologies. For example, the project Digital Mine. Our common goal is to achieve zero emissions into the atmosphere, this is our main criterion,” added Philip Knoche.

At the pavilion, all stages of the nuclear fuel cycle — from uranium mining to processing of spent nuclear fuel — are visually demonstrated using mock-ups and interactive games. With the help of virtual reality, visitors can “visit” a mine and learn how uranium is extracted by the most progressive and environmentally safe method of in-situ leaching. The guests will also have the opportunity to be inside a nuclear reactor and see its remote control.

Sergey Kwan