Russia unveiled the world’s first floating nuclear power station at a ceremony in the port of the far northern city of Murmansk, where it will be loaded with nuclear fuel before heading to eastern Siberia. Built in Saint Petersburg, the Akademik Lomonosov arrived in Murmansk where it was moored in the port and presented to the media.
Akademik Lomonosov was constructed by Russian state nuclear power firm Rosatom. It has length of 144 metres and width of 30 metres. It has displacement of 21,500 tonnes and crew of 69 people. For power generation, it has been fitted with two modified KLT-40 naval propulsion nuclear reactors (each of 35 MW capacity) together providing up to 70 MW of electricity and 300 MW of heat. It is named after Russian Academician Mikhail Lomonosov.
It has latest security systems and is considered as one of safest nuclear installations in the world. However, environmentalists have dubbed it as ‘nuclear Titanic’ or ‘Chernobyl on ice’. It will be primarily used to power oil rigs in remote areas of Artic region where Russia is pushing to drill for oil and gas.
The low-capacity, mobile (floating) nuclear power plant can produce enough electricity to power town of 200,000 residents living in Russia’s far-flung northernmost Artic region where large amounts of electricity is not needed’ and construction of conventional power station based on coal, gas and diesel is complicated and costly. It can save upto 50,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per year.