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Relative Roles of Breeders vs ALWRs In Indias Nuclear System, and U.S.s and Indias Perceptions of the 123 Agreement Chaim Braun Consulting Professor Center.

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Presentation on theme: "Relative Roles of Breeders vs ALWRs In Indias Nuclear System, and U.S.s and Indias Perceptions of the 123 Agreement Chaim Braun Consulting Professor Center."— Presentation transcript:

1 Relative Roles of Breeders vs ALWRs In Indias Nuclear System, and U.S.s and Indias Perceptions of the 123 Agreement Chaim Braun Consulting Professor Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) Stanford University Presented at the University of Reading Conference on the India – United States Nuclear Cooperation Agreement Reading, U.K., September 14, 2009


3 U.S.-India Nuclear Deal India agrees to: Separate civilian from military facilities Civilian sites subject to IAEA safeguards Support Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty negotiations and continue unilateral moratorium on testing U.S. agrees to: Cooperate on civilian nuclear technology development Assure reliable supply of nuclear fuel – Congressional approval obtained – Nuclear Supplier Group consensus obtained

4 Indias Perceptions of its Nonproliferation Status Prior to Signing of 123 Agreement India views itself as an effective Nuclear Weapons State (NWS), having in place most of the requisite attributes: - It tested both fission and fusion weapons - It developed strong indigenous materials protection control and accounting system (MPC&A) - It has a significant system of operating nuclear power plants of Indigenous design - It demonstrated and operates an entire closed nuclear fuel cycle for both military, civilian uses - It didnt export proliferating or dual-use nuclear technologies to suspect end-users

5 Indias Perceptions of its Nonproliferation Status Prior to Signing of 123 Agreement (Cont.) India refrains from further nuclear weapons testing despite demands from some weapons designers India, however, didnt sign the Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) claiming the Treaty inherently unequal India refused to abide by NPT disarmament provisions (Article VI), while claiming rights of NWS under Article I, III, and IV India refuse to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). Unclear position on Fissile Materials Cut-off Treaty (FMCT)

6 Indias Plans for Nuclear Electricity Generating System India developed its Three Phases nuclear energy growth scenario: - First phase – PHWRs – (HINDU CANDU), of limited total capacity due to insufficient Uranium supplies & mining capacity. PHWRs produce Plutonium supplies to fuel Second Phase reactors - Second Phase FBRs – 1,000 Mwe breeders, high gain breeding, metallic Plutonium fuel. Large capacity growth – 250,000 MWe by Large 4,000 – 6,000 MWe FBR stations, each with dedicated fuel reprocessing & re-fabrication plant.

7 Indias Plans for Nuclear Electricity Generating System (Cont.) Third Phase – Transition of FBRs system to operate on Pu-Th fuel cycle. Main fissile material is U-233, bred in FBR Thorium blankets. Introduction of Advanced converter (AHWR) to burn excess fissile material. Long-term equilibrium operation of FBRs- AHWRs system based on Thorium fuel cycle Central Role of FBRs technology, first large demonstration plant – 500 MWe PFBR, now under construction in Kalpakkam. Operation by 2012 Advanced Light Water Reactors (ALWRs) viewed as limited stop-gap measures, useful until FBRs capacity takes off

8 India Near-Term Nuclear Capacity Projections Reactor Types and CapacitiesCapacity (MWe)Cumulative Capacity (MWe) 17 Reactors at Six Sites in Operation; Tarapur, Rawatbhata, Kalpakkam, Narora, Kakrapar, Kaiga 4,120 3 PHWRs under Constructon at: Kaiga 4 (220 MWe), RAPP 5 & 6 (2 x 220 MWe) 6604,780 2 LWRs under Construction at Kudankulam (2 x 1,000 MWe)2,0006,780 PFBR under Construction at Kalpakkam (500 MWe)5007,280 Total Installed Capacity by ~ 20127,280 Future PHWRs by (8 x 7oo MWe)5,60012, 880 Future FBRs 2012 – 2020 (4 x 500 MWe)2,00014, 880 Future AHWR (1 x 300 MWe)30015,180 Total Year 2012 Capacity Plus India Technology Nuclear Plants by , 180 Future Imported LWRs (6 x 1,000 MWe)6,00021,180 Total Installed Capacity by ,180

9 Projected Installed Nuclear Power Capacity build-up – Reactor Type Breakdown

10 336 0 MW in operation 3920 MW under construction 8800 MW new sites identified Nuclear Power Plants in India - Sites 2820 MWe 4460 MWe

11 Role of ALWRs in Indias Nuclear Program Imported ALWRs will have to import their lifetime Uranium fuel requirements, due to lack of indigenous fuel supplies ALWRs viewed by DAE as near-term capacity-fillers until domestic FBRs program matures DAE concerned that imported ALWRs will: - Create competition by foreign vendors, construction companies -Create regional nuclear generating corporations independent of NPCIL - Siphon-off Engineering talents from DAE reactors, R&D programs - BREAK DAEs NUCLEAR MONOPOLY Ambivalent attitude to nuclear technology imports constraining domestic nuclear development program

12 U.S.s Proliferation-related Perceptions Prior to Signing of 123 Agreement U.S. global nonproliferation concerns different than Indias domestic, regional positions U.S. cannot accept Indias claim for recognition as NWS status: - Impossible by NPT definitions - Similar demands could be raised by Pakistan, Israel – other NPT non-signatories - North Korea, ultimately Iran, could demand equal status based on developing capabilities - New Pandoras Box of latent nuclear weapons states could emerge, eventually claiming future similar status to India

13 U.S.s Proliferation-related Perceptions Prior to Signing of 123 Agreement (Cont.) - Concessions to India on terms of 123 Agreement will complicate similar Agreements then entering review with Korea, UAE, other Middle East countries - Indias Nonproliferation record not so pristine : - India clandestinely imported centrifuge enrichment technology (not unlike Pakistan) - India tested nuclear weapons twice: In 1974 (prompting the creation of the NSG) In 1998 (Prompting testing by Pakistan) - India maintained nuclear, missile proliferation-related contacts with Iran - India refused to sign NPT, CTBT, FMCT(?), etc

14 U.S. Perceptions of India Nuclear Energy System India had only limited success with domestic PHWRs program – 4,000 MWe, 6 Nuclear plant sites, all developed in forty years PHWRs program afflicted by lack of Uranium fuel, reduced generation, declining capacity factors Importing ALWRs will significantly increase Indias nuclear capacity. Just three GE-Hitachi ABWRs (1,340 MWe each) equal to total PHWRs capacity India installed in forty years ALWRs are proven, commercially ready, large-scale, fast-growth, nuclear electricity option for India

15 U.S. Perceptions of India Nuclear Energy System (Cont.) It could be to Indias benefit to give up its experimental, proliferative PFBR, fuel cycle, in exchange for ready ALWRs, fresh Uranium supplies to existing PHWRs Giving up PFBR: - Small price to pay for large-scale benefits - Will burnish Indias nonproliferation credentials - Will hinder other countries demands for closed fuel cycle, sensitive fuel cycle facilities - Will slow the spread of dreaded Plutonium economy

16 Indias Proliferation-related Perceptions After Signing of the 123 Agreement India considers it got a clean i.e. unconditional exemption from Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) Conditions of supply: - It can import Uranium for its operating PHWRs - It requires foreign ALWR vendors to provide Uranium supplies for lifetime of reactors imported - It demand rights to import enrichment and reprocessing (ENR) technologies, given its equivalent NWS status, NSG exemption: - Enrichment plants to convert fresh Uranium supplies to Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) fuel for future ALWRS

17 Indias Proliferation-related Perceptions After Signing of 123 Agreement (Cont.) - Reprocessing plants to reprocess spent ALWRs, PHWRs spent fuel, extract Plutonium for its evolving FBRs program - It demands blanket approval rights to reprocess U.S. origin fuel, or spent fuel from U.S. ALWRs, as part of implementing negotiations following signing of 123 Agreement - It demand rights to export, under safeguards, its PHWRs technology to developing countries, despite proliferative characteristics of PHWR design General approach of Lets hit the iron while its hot

18 Indias Perceptions of Nuclear Reactor Imports Indias Singh Government paid high political price to pass the Agreement for Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation (123 Agreement) in Indian Parliament India supported U.S. positions regarding Irans nuclear program in IAEA, UN Security Council India cancelled its participation in Iran Pakistan India (IPI) natural gas pipeline project General feeling of sacrificing legitimate regional energy, security concerns, for global goals of U.S. Indias Government possibly needed to dress-up benefits obtained from 123 Agreement to justify political costs incurred

19 Indias Perceptions of Nuclear Reactor Imports (Cont.) Main benefits now claimed by Indias Government: - Fresh Uranium supplies to operating PHWRs - Inflated numbers of ALWRs expected to be installed by 2020 – 60 GWe, rather than 8 GWe in pre- Agreement estimate (2005) - Inflated numbers of all nuclear plants to be installed: 63 Gwe by 2030, increasing to even 470 GWe by 2050 If the Country Thinks Big and Executes its Plans Correctly per Prime Minister Singh, on September Exporting Indian PHWRs to less developed countries to demonstrate Indias technological prowess

20 Indias Perceptions of Nuclear Reactor Imports (Cont. II) Important role of domestic FBRs seem forgotten in irrational exuberance over importing ALWRs Introduction of foreign vendors, deals with Indian suppliers, could reduce Department of Atomic Energy (DAE)s monopoly over Indian nuclear program

21 U.S.s Proliferation-related Perceptions After Signing of 123 Agreement U.S. cannot accept Indias claim as effective NWS U.S. insisted on India signing comprehensive safeguards Agreement (CSA) with IAEA, filing Facility Attachment document for each reactor, fuel cycle facility, to be safeguarded, & bringing signed India-specific CSA into force U.S. still needs India nonproliferation assurances to approve nuclear technology export (Part 810) licenses U.S. not enthusiastic about blanket reprocessing approval. Issue now under discussion. Could complicate pending 123 Agreement negotiation with Korea

22 U.S.s proliferation-related Perceptions After Signing of 123 Agreement (Cont.) U.S. opposed to Indias requests to import ENR technologies: - On long-term policy basis (1978 NNPA) - Since India did not sign NPT - Inconsistent with NSG Conditions of Supply (Indias exemption not completely clean) - Contrary to requirements of 2006 Hyde Act - Contrary to G8 Statement of May 2009 U.S. concerned about renewed nuclear testing in India following claims of 1998 thermonuclear test fizzle. Singh Government tries to finesse situation, claiming test results were sufficient, no more required now

23 U.S. Perceptions on Reactor Exports to India Following Passage of 123 Agreement Very limited progress to date, but cautiously optimistic Only available, licensed sites handed to Russian, French reactor vendor Corporations U.S. nuclear vendors sites identified only in August These include Mithi Virdi in Gujarat State, Kovada in Andhra Pradesh State. Licensing status of both sites yet unclear Limited progress on third-party liability laws in India, India signing to 1998 Vienna Convention, updating coverage limits. India Government promised action by 2009 year-end Need to resolve negotiations on blanket reprocessing approvals, India ENR technologies import rights. Supporting Indias claim conflicts with G8 Statement

24 U.S. Perceptions on Reactor Exports to India Following Passage of 123 Agreement (Cont.) Need to de-conflict with UAEs, other Middle East countries, Draft & pending 123 Agreements, where a Return Clause has been inserted. Will U.S. insist on similar right in Indias 123 Agreement? Under what circumstances? How to implement? Part 810 export licenses to U.S. vendors not yet issued pending clarifications on open nonproliferation issues U.S. supported Indias applications, spent political capital, in securing NSG exemption, passage of 123 Agreement in Congress, yet major economic benefits promised are presently claimed by Russians, French

25 The Path Forward – Resolving Past Differing Interpretations – Personal Observations India could now be defined as Virtual NWS within nonproliferation regime Such definition allows each side to interpret it any way it wishes. Face is saved all around Real test is in finding acceptable solutions to specific issues, while each side maintains its basic positions On ENR technologies – India already posses rudimentary enrichment, reprocessing technologies. If India further develop these technologies using its own resources, constructs, operates its plants under IAEA safeguards – this represents best near-term option

26 The Path Forward – Resolving Differing Interpretations – Personal Observations (Cont.) In time, as confidence builds in implementation of 123 Agreement, & in Indias nuclear program, sensitive technology imports could be considered, as parts of large ALWRs orders India might be able to construct ~ 8-12 GWe of ALWRs by 2020, > 30 GWe by 2030 ALWRs program will buy India time in developing FBR reactor technology, FBR fuel cycle facilities commercialization, using mostly its own resources, unless FBR technology is brought under safeguards Future cooperative progress will be made, but at slower pace than currently estimated

27 BACKUP SLIDES Indias Breeder Program

28 Relative Roles of Breeders vs ALWRs In Indias Nuclear System, and U.S.s and Indias Perceptions of 123 Agreement - Introduction India and U.S. had different perceptions of Indias nonproliferation situation & expansion mode of nuclear electricity generation system These differences complicated, slowed down, negotiations for the Agreement on Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation (123 Agreement) There have occurred reversals in some of the positions of the two sides after the passage of the Agreement, as compared with the initial positions Several issues still need to be resolved before the full value of the 123 Agreement is realized

29 THREE STAGE NUCLEAR POWER PROGRAM Stage – I PHWRs 16- Operating 16- Operating 4- Under construction 4- Under construction Several others planned Several others planned Scaling to 700 MWe Scaling to 700 MWe Gestation period being reduced Gestation period being reduced POWER POTENTIAL 10,000 MWe POWER POTENTIAL 10,000 MWeLWRs 2 BWRs Operating 2 BWRs Operating 2 VVERs under 2 VVERs under construction construction Stage - II Fast Breeder Reactors Fast Breeder Reactors 40 MWth FBTR - Operating 40 MWth FBTR - Operating Technology Objectives realised 500 MWe PFBR- 500 MWe PFBR- construction commenced construction commenced POWER POTENTIAL 540,000 MWe POWER POTENTIAL 540,000 MWe Stage - III Thorium Based Reactors Thorium Based Reactors 30 kWth KAMINI- Operating 30 kWth KAMINI- Operating 300 MWe AHWR-Under Regulatory Examination 300 MWe AHWR-Under Regulatory Examination POWER POTENTIAL Very Large. Availability of ADS can enable early introduction of Thorium on a large scale POWER POTENTIAL Very Large. Availability of ADS can enable early introduction of Thorium on a large scale

30 ParametersThermal Neutron Reactors (PHWR) Fast Neutron Spectrum Reactors (PFBR) FuelNatural UO 2 (Pu-U) O 2 Clad materialZircaloy-220% CW 15Cr-15Ni-Mo-Ti CoolantHeavy WaterLiquid Sodium Core outlet temp, o C Core power density, W/cm Neutron energy0.025 ev> 100 kev Burnup6,700 MWd/t100,000 MWd/t Neutron Flux, n/cm 2 /s x10 15 Life of core ~180 Days2 Years COMPARISON OF PHWR AND PFBR CORES

31 FBR PROGRAMME IN INDIA Ø India started FBR program with construction of FBTR Ø FBTR is a 40 MWt (13.5 MWe) loop type reactor. Design is same as that of Rapsodie-Fortissimo except for incorporation of SG and TG (agreement signed with CEA, France in 1969). Ø FBTR is in operation since Ø 500 MWe Fast Breeder Reactor Project (PFBR) through Indigenous design and construction Ø Government. granted financial sanction for construction in Sep Ø Construction of PFBR has been undertaken by BHAVINI. Ø PFBR will be commissioned by Ø Beyond PFBR: 4 units of 500 MWe FBR (twin unit concept) similar to PFBR with improved economy, enhanced safety, by Ø Subsequent reactors would be 1000 MWe units with metallic fuel


33 Reactor Vault

34 Safety Vessel with Thermal Insulation Panels

35 35 Fabrication Technology for MOX Fuel Established Experimental irradiation of PFBR MOX fuel (with U-233) in FBTR: fuel has reached 60 GWd/t burn-up Fuel specifications optimized for product recovery as well as performance R&D on metallic fuel for achieving shorter doubling time PFBR type MOX pins for experimental irradiation Annular MOX pellet Fuel Fabrication for PFBR

36 Constraints on Implementing Indias Fast Breeder Reactors Program Successful Completion & Startup of PFBR Closing Nuclear Fuel Cycle in PFBR & Follow-up FBRs - On-site Reprocessing & Re-Fabrication Fuel Cycle Transition from Oxide to Metal Plutonium Fuels, Thorium-U-233 Fuels Funding Future FBRs, Fuel Cycle Facilities Construction Constructing ~250 GWe in Forty Five Years - Past Record ~ 7 GWe in Forty Years Managing Interfaces between FBRs constructors, Operators, Fuel Cycle Providers & Regulators at each site Opening up New FBR Sites –One to Two Sites/Year for Forty Years - Past Record - Seven New Power Plant Sites in Forty Years Training Manpower for all FBRs, Fuel Cycle Facilities, Construction corporations, regulators Industrial Fabrication Capacity dedicated to DAE Missions

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