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Business trends

China upgrades nuclear reactors to wean itself off coal

Advanced designs use homegrown and foreign technology as West looks on warily

A dome is installed over a Hualong One nuclear reactor at the Fangchenggang nuclear power plant in China's Guangxi-Zhuang Autonomous Region on May 23.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- China's state-owned power plant operators are introducing safer, more efficient nuclear reactors as the government looks to raise its nuclear power capacity by 50% by 2020 to reduce its reliance on coal.

So-called generation III plus reactors have safety features that automatically shut down the unit if the power is cut off. At least three advanced reactors will be operating in China by the end of the year, and more are on the way.

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