Just last month, the Secretary of the Department of Atomic Energy announced that the Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR) will be commissioned next year at Kalpakkam. Despite an investment of over $100 billion (in 2007 dollars) on research, development, and constructing prototypes by countries such as the United States, France, the United Kingdom, and Japan, fast breeder reactors have proven to be costly to build and operate, susceptible to severe accidents, and incapable of operating reliably. Given this history, the DAE’s pursuit of this technology makes little sense. The PFBR has been under planning since the early 1980s; it is to inaugurate the second phase of the DAE’s three-phase strategy, which was adopted in 1954. The one operating breeder reactor in India is the Fast Breeder Test Reactor, whose operating history has been patchy, it having operated for only 21 per cent of the maximum possible operating time (as of 2013).
Deccan Chronicle 20th Nov 2016 read more »