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Nuclear Safety Cooperation

U1.04/03 - Khmelnitsky NPP - Large Scale On-Site Assistance (AP ref

  • Closed
Benefitting Zone
Eastern Europe
€ 2,895,563.75
EU Contribution
Contracted in 2005
Technical Assistance to the Commonwealth of Independent States


Type of activity

On Site Assistance



Contracting authority

European Commission

Method of Procurement

Direct Agreement & AV DA


20/05/2005 - 19/09/2008





Project / Budget year

TACIS 2003 - Nuclear Safety Action Programme / 2003


Khmelnistky nuclear power plant (NPP) is situated approximately 400km east of Kiev, and consists of two VVER 1000/320 units that belong to a standard VVER 1000 reactor design. Unit 1 was commissioned 1987. Unit-1 was commissioned on 22 December 1987 and Unit-2 on 8 August 2004. Despite the Unit 2 construction started shortly after the Unit 1, its construction was put on hold in 1990 because of the Moratorium on building nuclear facilities raised by Ukrainian parliament after break down of former Soviet Union. Construction of Unit 2 was eventually completed in 2004 in the framework of K2R4 Euratom loan that was provided to Ukraine for the completion of two remaining unfinished VVER 1000 units whose construction was on hold for about 16 years. One of the conditions of the Euratom Loan was that the plant had to implement number of safety improvement measures to address the IAEA safety issues, as well as to bring the plant safety to the standard as required in the European Union. These measures were required for Unit 2 only.
The TACIS nuclear safety programme started at Khmelnitsky NPP in 1996. Since then, there was number of projects implemented that focused on enhancement of the plant safety culture, as well as improvement of the plant design features through the equipment supply projects.


The On-site assistance (OSA) programme is implemented by EU utilities or consortia with experience of NPP operation in the EU that are contracted by the EC to work on site at a nuclear power plant of the Beneficiary country. The aim of OSA is to provide the Beneficiary nuclear power plant with support to different areas i.e. safety culture, quality assurance, maintenance, management and training, etc. and to upgrade the safety of the plant through the supply of equipment. The OSA team maintains a site presence and assists the plant management/operation in various safety aspects, such as the safety culture, safe operation and maintenance. In addition, the OSA Team assists the EC, End User and suppliers implementing the supply projects that deal with replacement of the old equipment which does not meet safety requirements or installation of new equipment based on its safety importance.
The aim of the On-Site Assistance programme at Khmelnitsky NPP (KhNPP) was to combine the experience of the OSA Consultant with the experience and needs of the Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) operator in order to:
improve the operational safety of KhNPP through the transfer of know-how and operational best practice;
identify, prepare and implement safety related specific projects which include the tendering and procurement of equipment required to improve the safety of the power plant.


The OSA activities were implemented by the EC Consultant, a Consortium of IBERDROLA and SOGIN from 20 May 2005 to 19 September 2008. An arrangement for implementation of the OSA activities involved two general areas:
General Operational (or On-Site) Assistance activities
Implementation of specific equipment supply projects
1) The on-site assistance activities primarily focused on transfer of know-how and improvement of KhNPP personnel knowledge and skills in the following areas, some of which were continuation of activities started in the previous OSA service contract for KhNPP:
Alarm sheets: Total of 192 alarm sheets were produced, and validated at the Full scope simulator.
Normal operating procedures: The plant agreed on the Consultant's methodology to review normal plant operating procedures; the plant eventually decided to continue on this activity with their own resources.
Information support for operators: Task activities included the elaboration of a software system for online presentation of information to the operators that helps evaluating the situation promptly and performing the necessary actions. This task involved three phases and was completed in September 2008.
Risk informed applications (subtask C1, C2, and C3), which included:
o Subtasks C1 Maintenance optimization: An implementation guideline was developed together with an optimized maintenance schedule for the two systems important to safety.
o Subtask C2 Risk Informed In-Service I inspection (ISI): A Risk Informed ISI guideline was developed and transfer of know-how to the plant personnel.
o Subtask C3 Optimization of safety system maintenance and repair (also known as optimization of the plant Technical Specifications): A methodology to assess changes in the plant technical specification was developed and conducted several model cases conducted to demonstrate its applicability.
Despite that an appropriate regulatory framework was not available in Ukraine at that time, which would have enabled a licensing the Risk informed applications, the Consultant has established a good basis for Risk informed applications that the plant can understand, as well as transferred the best EU knowledge on the subject to the plant personnel.
2) Continuation on management of the implementation of specific equipment supply projects
U1.04/05A Replacement of Neutron Flux and Reactor Control and Protection system. This was the major project for which the Large Scale Contract has been placed. This project was implemented by the Ukrainian Consortium Radiy / Impuls two years ahead the original project schedule. The preliminary acceptance was signed on 5 September 2008 and two year warranty period commenced.
U1.04/97B – Equipment for eddy current inspection of threaded holes of main primary equipment flanges. This project was completed successfully.
U1.04/97C - Reactor vessel SK187 surveillance system. Despite the European Commission repeated the tender procedures twice, all technically acceptable offers substantially exceeded the maximum allocated budget. This project was therefore cancelled.
U1.04/93A Treatment of Backlog of radioactive waste water.

Project management and co-ordination for implementation of the above projects dealt with some or all of the following main aspects (depending on the status of the project at the beginning of the contract, as some of them were started in the previous OSA service contract for KhNPP):
Project scheduling,
Cost estimating,
Equipment tendering process management and in particular proposal for the procedure to be followed for each procurement,
Preparation of Technical Specifications for equipment procurement and evaluation criteria,
Technical, commercial and financial evaluation of the bids
Quality Assurance Program and the Quality Procedure for administrative management of the contract were issued and sent to EC with the Inception Report,
Licensing activities have been performed in parallel with the relevant projects implementation and according to specific steps of the “2+2” licensing approach defined for Ukraine.
The impacts of international assistance implemented through TACIS Nuclear Safety programme are well visible. In 2007, the Khmelnitsky NPP hosted the IAEA Operational Safety rReview Team (OSART) mission. The OSART noted several modifications, namely new electrical batteries, and neutron flux and reactor control and protection system that were implemented through the European Commission TACIS Nuclear safety programme. The Alarm sheets developed by OSA team for the main control room emergency panels were recognized as a good performance.