Inside Qinshan: The first — and still largest — nuclear power plant in China

World Today

China has 30 nuclear power plants in operation, and another 24 under construction. Qinshan is by far the largest on the Chinese mainland, and the first built.

CCTV’s Zheng Yibing reports.

Qinshan nuclear power plant lies in Haiyan county, east China’s Zhejiang province. Construction began in 1985, and the first grid was connected in 1991.

The 300-megawatt power unit continues to provide important lessons for the nuclear industry, including the recent generation-3 Hualong-One technology.

This marks the ninth and latest power unit in Qinhan. The plant has gone through a history from 0 to mega-kilowatt class plant over its 30 year development. 

The latest unit has over 80 percent indigenous technologies. It has made Qinshan a model in design, production, and innovation in China’s nuclear power industry.

Qinshan’s annual electricity output has reached 50 billion kilowatt hour. It meets the annual power consumption of six to seven medium-sized cities, and reduces emissions of up to 100 million tons of carbon dioxide.

The International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale has seven levels, ranging from zero, or the deviation, to seven, a major accident. In 30 years, Qinshan’s operation has been at the lowest level.

Qinshan’s initial power unit has operated for over 25 years– making retirement of such facilities now the next important nuclear project.