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Commencement of Core Loading at India’s 1st indigenous PFBR, Kalpakkam

Utkarsh Classes Last Updated 05-03-2024
Commencement of Core Loading at India’s 1st indigenous PFBR, Kalpakkam State news 5 min read

Prime Minister Narendra Modi witnessed a historic milestone today, marking the entry into the second stage of India's three-stage nuclear program. He observed the commencement of "Core Loading" at India's first indigenous Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR) (500 MWe) at Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu. 

  • The PFBR has been fully designed and constructed by BHAVINI, in line with the spirit of Aatmanirbhar Bharat, with significant contributions from over 200 Indian industries, including MSMEs.
  • India will soon commission a Fast Breeder Reactor, making it the second country after Russia to have one. The reactor will provide safe, efficient, and clean energy while minimizing nuclear waste and featuring advanced safety measures - contributing towards the goal of net-zero.
  • BHAVINI paves the way as a forerunner in the second stage of India's three-stage Nuclear power program by building a 500 MWe PFBR. 
  • The mandate is to build, commission, and operate Fast Breeder Reactors for long-term energy security..
  • The PFBR is a safe third-generation reactor that uses spent fuel from the first stage, reducing nuclear waste and the need for large disposal facilities.
  • The growth of the Indian nuclear power program is critical to meet the twin goals of energy security and sustainable development. India is committed to expanding peaceful applications of nuclear technology while ensuring the security of nuclear and radiological materials.

Components of a nuclear reactor


Uranium oxide pellets are arranged in tubes to form fuel rods, which are used as basic fuel.


Material in the core is used to slow down the neutrons released from fission so that they can cause more fission. This material is typically water, but it may also be heavy water or graphite.

Control rods or blades

Neutrons released from fission are slowed down in the core by material, which causes more fission. Common materials used for this purpose include water, heavy water, and graphite.


A fluid circulates through the core to transfer heat. In light water reactors, the water moderator also functions as a primary coolant.

Main types of nuclear reactor

Pressurized water reactor (PWR)

The Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) is the most widely used type of nuclear reactor, with around 300 operational reactors for power generation and several hundred more used for naval propulsion. The design of PWRs was initially developed for submarine power plants. PWRs use ordinary water as both coolant and moderator to control the nuclear reaction.

Boiling water reactor (BWR)

This type of reactor is similar to the PWR but has only one circuit with water at lower pressure (roughly 75 times atmospheric pressure). This results in water boiling in the core at around 285°C. The reactor is designed to function with 12-15% of the water in the top part of the core as steam, which reduces the moderating effect and efficiency in that area.

Pressurised heavy water reactor (PHWR)

The PHWR reactor, also known as CANDU, has been in development since the 1950s in Canada. Since the 1980s, it has also been developed in India. These reactors typically use natural uranium oxide fuel, which contains only 0.7% U-235. Therefore, a more efficient moderator, such as heavy water (D2O), is required


Answer: Fast Breeder Test Reactor(FBTR) and a Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor(PHWR).

Answer: Tamil Nadu.

Answer: Plutonium or more highly enriched uranium
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