Rosatom and Russian Railways to develop nuclear powered trainPosted by Editor on Friday, 25 February 2011 09:11 | Published in Road & Rail Transport
Vice-president of Russian Railways, RZD, Valentin Gapanovich says that together with Rosatom the Russian railway monopoly will present the layout of an experimental nuclear powered train by the end of this year. The train will consist of 11 wagons with the engine a small fast breeder reactor. In its initial stage, the train will be a scientific exhibition complex.
The design is by Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation, Rosatom.
"I looked at the design of the train, I liked it and I support the idea originally presented by Rosatom since it is a innovative way of develop nuclear energy", said Gapanivich.
The estimated cost of construction is still unclear, and nothing is revealed about the safety of such train.
According to the Barents ObserverThis is not the first time the idea of a nuclear powered train has been presented. Back in 1956, the Ministry of Transport of the USSR first announced nuclear propulsion as a possibility for locomotives that could operate autonomously, without electricity or large amount of fuel. The Ministry then said such locomotives could be used in the High North and remote areas of Siberia, according to a back-ground article posted on the magazine Popularnaja Mehanika.
Another feature of the proposed nuclear powered train is that it could easily be converted to a mobile nuclear power plant, supplying energy to remote areas and industrial sites.
Russia is currently building the world’s first floating nuclear power plant. The barge to hold the reactors was floated in June last year at St. Petersburg. The floating nuclear power plant is scheduled to be towed from St. Petersburg to the remote Russian Arctic region of Chukotka by the end of 2011.