China's experimental fast reactor went critical

On July 21, 2010 the China Experimental Fast Reactor (CEFR) achieved its first criticality. The reactor, operated by the China Institute of Atomic Energy (CIAE) in Beijing, is a 20 MWe (65 MWt) sodium-cooled pool type reactor. It is supposed to be the first in a series of fast reactors that China is planning to build by 2030.

According to, the current plan calls for construction of a series of fast reactors similar to the Russian BN-800. The demonstration reactor, CDFR, is expected to start operating in 2018. A small series of commercial CCFR reactors, will be completed by 2030. China is also planning to build a demonstration large fast breeder reactor, CDFBR, that would provide 1000-1500 MWe by the and of 2020s and then a commercial series of reactors of this type, CCFBR, in the 2030s.

It is not clear if China will use Russia's assistance in building the first reactors of the BN-800 type. According to an intergovernmental agreement, Russia will build two BN-800 reactors in China.