The Bolivian Nuclear Energy Agency (ABEN) has signed detailed design documentation approval and acceptance acts for the construction of administrative and residential area facilities within the contract to build the Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development on the territory of Bolivia, including the administrative building, training center, utility infrastructure and other facilities. Earlier, in December 2018, detailed design documentation acts were signed for two other facilities of this construction stage, the Multipurpose Irradiation Centre and the Public Catering Complex. GSPI, operating under Rusatom Overseas, is in charge of the Center construction.

“Successful cooperation of GSPI and ABEN experts made it possible to have the documentation approved in the soonest possible manner without any major issues. GSPI has put a lot of effort into developing more than 200 documentation papers,” Igor Dvoriashin, Project Chief Engineer from GSPI, is quoted as saying.

The EPC contract for The Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development construction in El Alto, Bolivia, was signed on 19 September 2017 between ABEN and GSPI within the framework of the IAEA’s 61st General Conference in Vienna. In March 2019, as part of construction stage 1 facilities (Cyclotron Radiopharmacy Preclinical Complex, CRPC), the CRPC building construction is in full swing. According to the contract, center construction stage 1 facilities takeover to the customer is scheduled for February 2020. Russia plans to finish construction ahead of contract terms, by the end of 2019.

For construction stage 2 facilities, detailed design documentation for the administrative and residential area has been approved by the customer; besides, foundation work has begun on the Multipurpose Irradiation Centre building while MIC core equipment manufacturing is underway.

Design and licensing documentation for the radiobiology and radioecology laboratory as well as plasma physics laboratory (construction stage 3 facilities) is being actively developed. Design and licensing documentation development for core equipment as well as its manufacturing are underway for the research reactor, neutron activation analysis laboratory and isotope laboratory (construction stage 4 facilities).

Sergey Musayelian, The Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development in Bolivia Construction Project Manager, Rusatom Overseas, “Today, work on The Center for Nuclear Technology Research and Development design, supply and construction is in progress according to contract terms. By the end of 2019, we will have built the Cyclotron Radiopharmacy Preclinical Complex, which means the Сenter will begin operation this year. We are going to fully finish the center construction in 2022.”

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The Сenter will be equipped with a 200kW VVER research reactor, a multipurpose irradiation centre based on a gamma installation, a cyclotron radiopharmacy complex, engineering facilities and various research laboratories. The Center will ensure that radiation technologies are employed in agriculture, healthcare, industry and other important areas of human life. The project is unique for the world’s nuclear industry. The site chosen for the center by the Bolivian authorities is the highest in the world (4,000 m above the sea level) out of those ever used for nuclear facilities construction.