Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited

  • Type –  State Owned Enterprise
  • FoundedSep’ 1987
  • Head Quarter –  Mumbai, India
  • Chairman & Managing Director –  Dr. S.K.Jain
  • Net IncomeRs 416.41 crore (US $ 90.36 million) (2009-10)


To develop Nuclear Power Technology and to produce Nuclear Power as a safe, environmentally benign and economically viable source of electrical energy to meet the increasing electricity needs of the country.

The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) is a government-owned corporation of India based in Mumbai. One of the public sector undertakings, it is wholly owned by the Union Government and is responsible for the generation of nuclear power for electricity. NPCIL is administered by the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), part of the Ministry of Science and Technology. NPCIL is the only power utility company in India which uses nuclear fuel sources.

NPCIL was created in September 1987 as public limited company under the Companies Act 1956, “with the objective of undertaking the design, construction, operation and maintenance of the atomic power stations for generation of electricity in pursuance of the schemes and programmes of the Government of India under the provision of the Atomic Energy Act 1962.” All nuclear power plants operated by the company are certified for ISO-14001 (Environment Management System).

Nuclear Power Generation (2006-07 to 2010-11)
Year Gross Generation (MUs) Capacity Factor (%) Availability Factor (%)
(Upto May 31, 2010)
3503 60 86
2009-10 18831 61 92
2008-09 14927 50 82
2007-08 16956 53 83
2006-07 18880 64 85

NPCIL is the sole body responsible for constructing and operating India’s commercial nuclear power plants. As of 2010 the company had 19 nuclear reactors in operation at six locations, a total installed capacity of 4560 MWe

Unit Type Capacity
TAPS-1 (Tarapur, Maharashtra) BWR 160 October 28, 1969
TAPS-2 (Tarapur, Maharashtra) BWR 160 October 28, 1969
RAPS-1 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 100 December 16, 1973
RAPS-2 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 200 April 1, 1981
MAPS-1 (Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu) PHWR 220 January 27, 1984
MAPS-2 (Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu) PHWR 220 March 21, 1986
NAPS-1 (Narora, Uttar Pradesh) PHWR 220 January 1, 1991
NAPS-2 (Narora, Uttar Pradesh) PHWR 220 July 1, 1992
KAPS-1 (Kakrapar, Gujarat) PHWR 220 May 6, 1993
KAPS-2 (Kakrapar, Gujarat) PHWR 220 September 1, 1995
KGS-2 (Kaiga, Karnataka) PHWR 220 May 6, 2000
RAPS-3 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 220 June 1, 2000
KGS-1 (Kaiga, Karnataka) PHWR 220 November 6, 2000
RAPS-4 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 220 December 23, 2000
TAPS-4 (Tarapur, Maharashtra) PHWR 540 September 12, 2005
TAPS-3 (Tarapur, Maharashtra) PHWR 540 August 18, 2006
KGS-3 (Kaiga, Karnataka) PHWR 220 May 6, 2007
RAPS-5 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 220 February 4, 2010
RAPS-6 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 220 March 31, 2010
Total Capacity 4560

Subsequent to the government’s decision to allow private companies to provide nuclear power, the company has experienced problems with private enterprises “poaching” its employees.

Unit Under Construction Type Capacity
Expected Date
KNPP-1 (Kudankulam, Tamil Nadu) PHWR 1000 Dec-2010
KNPP-2 (Kudankulam, Tamil Nadu) PHWR 1000 Jun-2011
KGS-4 (Kaiga, Karnataka) PHWR 220 Aug-2010
KAPS-3 (Kakrapar, Gujarat) PHWR 700 June 2015
KAPS-4 (Kakrapar, Gujarat) PHWR 700 Dec 2015
RAPS-7 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 700 Jun-2016
RAPS-8 (Rawatbhata, Rajasthan) PHWR 700 Dec-2016
Total Capacity 5020

Q)What is India’s 3-Stage Nuclear Power Programme?

In view of the limited fossil fuel availability with the country, the relevance of Nuclear Power in meeting the short and long term needs of our energy was recognised right at the initial stage. From the very beginning, as a long term strategy, the Nuclear Power Programme formulated by Dr. Homi Bhabha embarked on the three stage nuclear power programme, linking the fuel cycle of Pressurised Heavy Water Reactor (PHWR) and Fast Breeder Reactor (FBR) for Judicious utilisation  of our limited reserves of Uranium and vast Thorium reserves. The emphasis of the programme was self-reliance and thorium utilisation as a long term objective. The PHWR was chosen due to extensive research and development facilities covering diverse areas for supporting technology absorption.

The 3-stage of our Nuclear Power Programme are :

  • Stage-I : envisages, construction of Natural Uranium, Heavy Water Moderated and Cooled Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors (PHWRs). Spent fuel from these reactors is reprocessed to obtain Plutonium.
  • Stage-II : evisages, construction of Fast Breeder Reactors (FBRs) fuelled by Plutonium produced in stage-I. These reactors would also breed U-233 from Thorium.
  • Stage-III : would comprise power reactors using U-233 / Thorium as fuel.
Q)Can a Chernobyl type accident take place in Indian Nuclear Power Plants?
Nuclear power has a very good safety record for a period spanning more than three decades. The Three Mile Island (TMI) accident in March, 1979 and the Chernobyl accident in April, 1986, Have raised apprehensions in the minds of the public all over the world. In the case of TMI, no radiation injury had occured to any member of the Public. In fact all the safety systems had worked as designed and no radioactivity was released to the atmosphere. At chernobyl, 31 people died and they are all plant personnel. However, it must be recognised that the Chernobyl accident occured due to the negligence of operaters who violated the safety procedures. Besides, the Chernobyl reactor is a totally different type. It employed Graphite as a moderator. Graphite is a form of carbon and its combustible property contributed to explosion in the reactor core. Such a sequence of events in the Nuclear plants is not possible and explosion in the core is ruled out as it is cooled and moderated by heavy water. Adequate safety features in the plant are provided to ensure  its safe operation. Paramount importance is given in setting up of nuclear power installations, to the safety of operating staff, public and environment. Safety experts and regulatory personnel are associated at all — missioning and operation of nuclear power plants. Thus Chernobyl type accident is ruled out in Indian Nuclear Power Plants.



Executive at India Electron Exchange

You may also like...

1 Response

  1. Mande says:

    It’s good to get a fresh way of looknig at it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *