Izvestiya vuzov. Yadernaya Energetika

The peer-reviewed scientific and technology journal. ISSN: 0204-3327

On Assessing the Efficiency of Investments in the Business Process Digitalization Program for NPP Design and Construction

6/15/2021 2021 - #02 Economics of nuclear power

Semenova D.Yu. Kharitonov V.V.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.26583/npe.2021.2.12

UDC: 621.039; 331.103.6; 658.5;

The close attention to ‘digital transformation’ observed in recent years is associated with the tasks of digitizing business processes, in which, in contrast to physical processes that have long been digitized, the interests and behavior of people play an important role. However, one of the least studied problems in the field of digitalization of the real sector of the economy, including nuclear power, is the assessment of the economic efficiency of investments in the business process digitalization. Investments in digitalization are interconnected with the cost of NPP electricity and other criteria of NPP competitiveness. As a criterion for assessing the efficiency of investments in the digitalization of the design and construction of NPPs, the authors of this article propose to consider the reduction in the cost and timing of the construction of NPPs, which have the greatest impact on the competitiveness of NPP projects in the global market. The results of calculations of criteria for the effectiveness of investments in NPP projects are presented: net discounted income, internal rate of return, payback period and present value of electricity. The obtained data show how the increase and decrease in the time and cost of construction of NPP power units affect the listed investment efficiency criteria. Based on the generalization of literature data, the article provides a systematized list of driving factors (drivers), possible directions and expected effects of digitalization of business processes to reduce the cost and duration of construction of new NPPs.


  1. Kharitonov V.V. Digital Economics of Nuclear Energy (Chapter 3 in the monograph Digital Platforms for Managing the Life Cycle of Complex Systems. Ed. by Prof. V.A. Tupchienko) Moscow. LLC «Nauchny Konsul’tant» Publ., 2018, 440 p. (in Russian).
  2. Schwab K. The Fourth Industrial Revolution. Moscow. EKSMO Publ., 2016,138 p. (in Russian).
  3. Global Innovation Index 2016. Winning with Global Innovation. WIPO, Cornell University, INSEAD, 2016, 451 р.
  4. Results of the Activities of the State Atomic Energy Corporation «Rosatom» for 2019. Annual report, 149 p. (in Russian).
  5. Rosatom Engineering Division. Transformation: Reboot. Annual report for 2018, 102 p. (in Russian).
  6. New Version of Rosatom’s Digital Strategy. Main Priorities and Tasks, 2019. Available at: https://www.tadviser.ru/index.php/Информационные_технологии_в_Росатоме (accessed Nov. 25, 2020) (in Russian).
  7. Flyvbjerg B., Budzier A. Why Your IT Project May Be Riskier Than You Think. Harvard Business Review. September 2011, v. 89, no. 9, pp. 23-25.
  8. Kharitonov V.V., Kosolapova N.V., Ulyanin Yu.A. Forecasting the Efficiency of Investments in Multi-Unit Power Plants. Vestnik NIYaU MIFI. 2018, v. 7, no. 6, pp. 546-562 (in Russian).
  9. Unlocking Reductions in the Construction Costs of Nuclear: A Practical Guide for Stakeholders. Nuclear Technology Development and Economics. NEA, OECD, 2020, 134 p.
  10. Capital Cost Estimates for Utility Scale Electricity Generating Plants. U.S. Energy Information Administration , U.S. Department of Energy, Washington, DC 20585, 2016.
  11. Lovering Jessica R., Yip Arthur, Nordhaus Ted. Historical Construction Costs of Global Nuclear Power Reactors. Energy Policy, 2016, no. 91, pр. 371-382.
  12. Berthelemy Michel. How to Reduce the Construction Costs of Gen-III Nuclear Reactors? The Role of Technical and Organizational Factors. Transforming Energy Markets, 41$st IAEE International Conference. Groningen, Netherlands, Jun 10-13, 2018.
  13. Nuclear Power Economics and Project Structuring – 2017 Edition. World Nuclear Association, Report No. 2017001. 2017, 48 p.
  14. The Future of Nuclear Energy in a Carbon$Constrained World. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2018, 275 p.
  15. Projected Costs of Generating Electricity. IEA, NEA, OECD, 2015, 215 p.
  16. Reduction of Capital Costs of Nuclear Power Plants. NEA, OECD. 2000, 108 р.
  17. The ETI Nuclear Cost Drivers Project: Summary Report. Energy Technologies Institute, Apr. 20, 2018, 55 р.
  18. Eash-Gates Philip, Klemun Magdalena M., Kavlak Goksin, McNerney James, Buongiorno Jacopo, Trancik Jessika E. Sources of Cost Overrun in Nuclear Power Plant Construction Call for a New Approach to Engineering Design. Joule. 2020, v. 4, iss. 11, pp. 2348-2373.
  19. What will Advanced Nuclear Power Plants Cost? A Standardized Cost Analysis of Advanced Nuclear Technologies in Commercial Development. An Energy Innovation Reform Project report. EIRP, Energy Options Network, 2017, 48 p.
  20. Chernyakhovskaya Yu.V., Korolkov D.L. Rain does not fall on One Roof. Atomnyj Ekspert. 2017, no. 5, pp. 16-24 (in Russian).
  21. D’haeseleer William D. Synthesis on the Economics of Nuclear Energy. Study for the European Commission. DG Energy. Nov. 27, 2013. 221 p.

NPP investment efficiency cost and construction time digitalization of NPP design and construction