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Flamanville nuclear reactor: Commissioning is delayed again

2022-01-12T11:28:27.858Z

The prestige project was actually supposed to deliver electricity as early as 2012 - the start of the nuclear reactor in Flamanville, France, has now been delayed again. It shouldn't be ready until 2023. The power plant will also be more expensive.



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Flamanville nuclear facility (August 2019): Defective welds

Photo: LOU BENOIST / AFP

The commissioning of the European Pressurized Water Reactor (EPR) in Flamanville in northern France has been delayed further.

The date for filling with fuel elements has been postponed from the end of 2022 to the second quarter of 2023, announced the energy company EDF.

In addition, the costs increase, according to company information from 12.4 to 12.7 billion euros.

EDF announced that several weld seams would have to be reworked before commissioning. Experience with one of the two EPR reactors in Taishan, China, should also be taken into account. One of them was taken offline in the summer due to technical problems. It is a "phenomenon of mechanical wear and tear on some components", which, according to EDF, had already occurred in French nuclear reactors. But that does not call the EPR model into question.

The EPR, which Siemens was initially involved in developing, was to become the prestige project of the French nuclear industry and originally go online in 2012.

According to calculations by the French Court of Auditors, the costs have increased even more than EDF admitted: from 3.3 billion to 19 billion euros.

There have been several technical problems, including with welds.

An EPR family reactor has been running in Finland since December, the construction of which had also been massively delayed and made more expensive.

French President Emmanuel Macron had announced the construction of additional nuclear reactors without commenting on the type or number.

It is expected that there will be six improved EPR models.

France relies on nuclear power in order to keep climate-damaging CO2 emissions low.

France currently has more than 56 reactors that produce almost 70 percent of its energy, more than any other country.

fdi / AFP

Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2022-01-12

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