MOSCOW, May 14. / TASS /. A hybrid reactor that could eventually replace nuclear power plants, scientists of the research center "Kurchatov Institute" will be assembled by the end of 2018, the physical start-up of the facility is planned for 2020. This was announced on Monday by the scientific adviser of the Kurchatov complex of thermonuclear energy and plasma technologies Peter Khvostenko.
Hybrid reactor combines the principles of thermonuclear and nuclear power. Unlike the nuclear reactor, it will work on thorium, which is cheaper and has more reserves than uranium. So, according to the scientists of the Institute, the reserves of uranium-235 will last only 50 to 70 years. Unlike a thermonuclear reactor in a hybrid, superhigh temperatures are not needed to generate energy.
"The hybrid tokamak is now called the T-15MD. This is a big installation, at the end of the year we have to assemble it on the site of the old T-15 in this building [Kurchatov Institute]. We dismantled [the old installation], we are building a new one on its foundation", – said Khvostenko, adding that in 2020 there will be a physical launch of a new installation, and that scientists will work out those technologies, "which are necessary for a thermonuclear neutron source precisely for a hybrid reactor".
The next stage in the development of the power industry should be a thermonuclear reactor. So, Russia, and also the countries of Europe, China, the USA and others are building in France the International Experimental Thermonuclear Reactor (ITER). It is based on the installation of tokamaks, which is considered to be the most promising device for implementing controlled thermonuclear fusion. The aim of the project is to demonstrate that thermonuclear energy can be used on an industrial scale.
Russian scientific organizations are responsible for the manufacture of 25 systems. The Institute of Nuclear Physics (INP) of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences will become the center of integration for the foreign participants of the ITER project. Elements made from different countries will be assembled and tested on its territory. The first plasma on ITER is planned to be received in 2025.