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Electricity generation in India

Installed nuclear capacity (Dec. 2008):
  • operational: 17
  • under construction: 6
Growing electricity demand

The Indian economy continues to show impressive economic growth. The country’s real gross domestic product (GDP) grew at an impressive rate of 9.1 percent during the first half of fiscal 2006 (April – September 2006), after growing by 8.7 percent in fiscal 2005. Together with the country’s impressive growth, India has also become a significant consumer of energy resources. According to EIA estimates, India was the fifth largest consumer of oil in the world during 2006.

Mix of primary Energy consumption (2004)
  • Coal - 53%
  • Oil - 33%
  • Natural Gas - 8%
  • Hydroelectricity - 5%
  • Nuclear - 1%
  • Other Renewables - 0%

Nuclear companies:


Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) is a wholly owned Undertaking of the Government of India under the administrative control of the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Government of India. It has been registered as a Public Limited Company under the Companies Act, 1956 in Sept. 1987 with the objective of undertaking the design, construction, operation and maintenance of the atomic power stations for generation of electricity.
The company is operating five nuclear power stations and is implementing construction of two ongoing nuclear power projects and handling other related activities consistent with the policies of the Government of India.
The total nuclear power generation by all units reached a record high of over 15,950 Million Units (MUs) during 2000, marking a increase of 23% over the previous year's performance.


The Nuclear Fuel Complex Hyderabad produces fuel bundles for both BWR and PHWR type reactors. The plant has facilities to manufacture coolant and calandria tubes for nuclear reactors. It also fabricates seamless stainless tubes.

Uranium Corporation of India Ltd.

Uranium Corporation of India Ltd. was set up to mine Uranium ore and manufacture Uranium concentrate. The corporation presently has mines at Jaduguda, Narwapahar and Bhatin in the state of Bihar. The mill at Jaduguda processes the ore mined.

India's nuclear history

India's nuclear history is a perfect illustration of the connection between civil and military use of nuclear power:

  • 1948: India's atomic history begins

India's atomic history begun in 1948 with the constitution of the Atomic Energy Commission. India created all facilities necessary for the production of atomic bombs as well as for energy production. Canada supported India's nuclear program in the 60ies, but stopped its aid in 1976 following India's nuclear bomb test.

  • 1950: India started to process Thorium-Uranium concentrates. and starts the Thorium Plant at Trombay in 1955.
  • 1956: APSARA, the first research reactor in Asia, attains criticality at Trombay, Mumbai.
  • 1959: the Uranium Metal Plant at Trombay produces Uranium since 1959.
  • 1960: First lot of 10 Fuel Elements for CIRUS reactor is fabricated at Trombay and CIRUS ? the 40 MWt research reactor attains criticality.
  • 1967: Uranium Corporation of India Limited is set up at Jaduguda, Bihar for mining and milling of uranium ores. The corporation presently has mines at Jaduguda, Narwapahar and Bhatin in the state of Bihar. The mill at Jaduguda processes the ore mined.
  • 1968: Nuclear Fuel Complex is set up at Hyderabad.
  • 1969: Reactor Research Centre is started at Kalpakkam. Renamed as Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research on December 18, 1985.
  • 1969: Heavy Water Projects is constituted..
  • 1969: Tarapur Atomic Power Station starts commercial operation.
  • 1970: Uranium-233 is separated from irradiated thorium
  • 1971: Plutonium fuel for Research Reactor PURNIMA-I is fabricated at Trombay , Since 1979 Plutonium-Uranium mixed oxide fuel is also fabricated at Trombay
  • 1972: Unit-1 of Rajasthan Atomic Power Station at Kota begins commercial operation.
  • 1972: Research Reactor PURNIMA-I attains criticality.
  • 1974: The first Indian underground nuclear explosion is conducted at Pokhran, Rajasthan.
  • 1982: Power Reactor Fuel Reprocessing Plant at Tarapur is commissioned.
  • 1983: Atomic Energy Regulatory Board, is constituted.
  • 1984: Madras Atomic Power Station - Unit I at Kalpakkam starts commercial operation.
  • 1984: Plutonium -Uranium mixed Carbide Fuel for fast breeder test reactor is fabricated
  • 1984: Research Reactor PURNIMA-II, a Uranium-233 fuelled homogenous reactor, attains criticality. PURNIMA-III follows in 1990.
  • 1985: Waste Immobilisation Plant (WIP) at Tarapur is commissioned.
  • 1985: Research Reactor DHRUVA (100 MWt) attains criticality.
  • 1985: Fast Breeder Test Reactor (FBTR) at Kalpakkam attains criticality.
  • 1989: Narora Atomic Power Station Unit I attains criticality.
  • 1992: Kakrapar Atomic Power Station - Unit I attains criticality.
  • 1996: Kalpakkam Reprocessing Plant (KARP) is commissioned. and the Kalpakkam Mini Reactor (KAMINI), with Uranium-233 fuel, attains criticality at Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research at Kalpakkam,
  • 1998: Five underground nuclear tests are conducted at Pokhran Range, Rajasthan.
  • 1998: Kalpakkam Reprocessing Plant (KARP) is dedicated to the Nation.

Between 1998 and 2000 four new reactor units begun operation

New developments in the nuclear sector

2009-03-23: GEH signs MoUs with Indian companies
GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) has signed agreements with Nuclear Power Corp of India Ltd (NPCIL) and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) to prepare for the construction of new nuclear power reactors in India.
Under the preliminary agreements, GEH said that it "will begin planning with NPCIL and BHEL for the necessary resources in manufacturing and construction management for a potential multiple-unit Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (ABWR) nuclear power station."

NPCIL said that its memorandum of understanding (MoU) with GE-H would allow discussions on the "techno-commercial aspects" of the 1350 MWe ABWR to begin. The company said that the MoU was signed by S Bhardwaj, NPCIL's technical director, and Steven Hucik, vice president of GEH's Global Unified ABWR Projects division.


French nuclear company AREVA and the Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) signed a declaration of intent to build NPPs in India.
2 EPR-reacotors with an output of 1 650 MW shall be built. The embodiment of the treaty will, according to experts, take about one year. Already in Sept. India and France have agreed last year on a co-operation in nuclear power.

Sites With Nuclear Facilities

siteplantreactor typconstruction startoperation startshut down
KaigaKaiga-1CANDU 200 (PHWR)19892000
Kaiga-2CANDU 200 (PHWR)19891999
Kaiga-3PHWR 20020022007
Kaiga-4PHWR 200 Horizontal Pre 202 MW net20022011
KakraparKakrapar-1CANDU 200 (PHWR)19841992
Kakrapar-2CANDU 200 (PHWR)19851995
KalpakkamKalpakkam FBTRFBR 1019721991
Kalpakkam KARPReprocessing Plant
Kalpakkam PFBRFBR 4702004
KudankulamKundakulam-1/2PWR 2 WWER 9001998
MadrasMadras-1CANDU 220 (PHWR)19711983
Madras-2CANDU 220 (PHWR)19721985
NaroraNarora-1CANDU 220 (PHWR)19761989
Narora-2CANDU 220 (PHWR)19771992
RajasthanRajasthan-1CANDU 200 (PHWR)19651972
Rajasthan-2CANDU 200 (PHWR)19681980
Rajasthan-3PHWR 20019902000
Rajasthan-4PHWR 20019902000
Rajasthan-5PHWR 20020022009
Rajasthan-6PHWR 220 MWe gross20022010
Tarapur-3PHWR 45020002006
Tarapur-4PHWR 45020002005