First chief designer of China's nuclear submarine dies at 96

China Military Online
Liu Yuyuan
2021-03-24 18:07:07

BEIJING, Mar. 24 -- Peng Shilu, the first chief designer of the first Chinese nuclear submarine, nuclear power expert, and academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAE), died in Beijing at the age of 96 at noon on March 22. Peng Shilu’s father was China’s revolutionary martyr, Peng Pai.

On November 18, 1925, Peng Shilu was born in Haifeng County, southeast China’s Guangdong Province. He graduated from the Moscow Institute of Chemical Engineering in 1956 and later went on to study nuclear power at the Moscow Power Institute. Completing the courses there, he returned home in 1958. Since then, he had been appointed Deputy Minister and Chief Engineer of the Ministry of Shipbuilding Industry, Deputy Minister and Chief Engineer of the Ministry of Water Resources of the People’s Republic of China, and the first chief designer of China’s first nuclear submarine. As one of the pioneers and founders in China’s nuclear power industry, he had been engaged in nuclear power researches for a long time.

In the 1960s, Peng presided over the whole-process development of submarine nuclear power plant, including the demonstration, design, testing, and operation, and participated in the debugging and sea trial of the first nuclear submarine. He also got involved in and successfully organized the development of the main pump that is fully sealed and high temperature, high pressure resistant, which was among technologies globally advanced at that time.

In the early 1980s, Peng sorted out three controlling elements, namely, investment, schedule and quality, for the construction of Daya Bay Nuclear Power Plant. Besides, in the second-phase project of Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant, he proposed the principle of “China taking the initiative while cooperating with foreign countries” and put forward the plan to independently design and construct two power-generating units of 600,000-kW. He personally calculated the main parameters, and outlined the schedule and investment, providing a reliable scientific basis for constructing the second-phase project at Qinshan.

Peng was awarded the National Science Conference Award in 1978, the grand prize for National Science and Technology Progress Award in 1985, the Certificate for Making Outstanding Contributions to National Defense Science and Technology Cause as an “Outstanding Chief Designer” by the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense of the PRC in 1988, the Science and Technology Progress Award of Ho Leung Ho Lee (HLHL) Foundation in 1996, and the Science and Technology Achievement Award of HLHL Foundation in 2017.

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