Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant : Unit 1 of 5.6GW nuclear power plant in UAE commissioned


Nawah Energy Company, a joint venture between the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) and Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO), has commissioned Unit 1 of the 5.6GW Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant in the Al Dhafrah Region in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

The Barakah nuclear power project, which has an estimated construction cost of $24.4 billion, will have four APR1400 pressurized water reactors, each with a capacity of 1.4GW. Once fully operational, the nuclear power plant will meet nearly 25% of the UAE’s power requirements.

The nuclear power project secured an operating license from the UAE’s Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulations (FANR) in February 2020, and a month later, and Nawah Energy completed fuel assembly loading.

Nawah Energy and the Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO), are said to have been progressing Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant safely through a comprehensive testing program, before completing the start-up.

Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant in the UAE commissioned.

Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant in the UAE commissioned. Photo courtesy of Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation.

Commenting on the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant milestone, Ali Al Hammadi – CEO of Nawah Energy, said: “The start-up of Unit 1 is a significant milestone for Nawah Energy Company as we fulfill our mandate to operate and maintain the plant in accordance with the highest international standards of safety and quality.

“The dedication of our people as well as our close collaboration with our Korean partners and cooperation with numerous international expert organizations has enabled this accomplishment. This reflects our commitment to upholding the highest safety, quality and operational transparency standards throughout the entire commissioning and startup process by leveraging the expertise of the global nuclear industry.”

According to ENEC, the commissioning of Unit 1 of Barakah nuclear power project marks the first time that the nuclear reactor safely generates heat, which is used for creating steam, turning a turbine to produce electricity.

The UAE nuclear energy corporation said that the first unit of the nuclear power plant after several weeks and undergoing numerous safety tests will be ready to be connected to the national electricity grid for generating the first megawatts of clean electricity in the country.

Mohamed Ibrahim Al Hammadi – CEO of ENEC, commenting on the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant, said: “Today is a truly historic moment for the UAE. It is the culmination of more than a decade of vision, strategic planning and robust program management. Despite the recent global challenges, our team has demonstrated outstanding resilience and commitment to the safe delivery of Unit 1.

“We are now another step closer to achieving our goal of supplying up to a quarter of our Nation’s electricity needs and powering its future growth with safe, reliable, and emissions-free electricity.”

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