EDF expects to increase the average life extension from five to seven years across its fleet of advanced gas cooled reactor (AGR) stations. The utility currently operates 14 AGR reactors in the UK, at eight different sites as well as one pressurized water reactor, Sizewell B.
The UK nuclear fleet performed well in 2011, generating 55.8 TWh of electricity; the highest generation for six years according to EDF’s annual results statement. EDF said that the 7.5 TWh increase (impact of €314 million on EBITDA) in EDF Energy nuclear output compared with 2010 was largely down to unplanned outages at Sizewell B and Heysham in 2010, and the movement in wholesale prices.
Seven-year life extensions are expected at all AGR stations including Heysham 1 and Hartlepool whose 5-year extensions to 2019 were announced in December 2010. These life extensions will be subject to the necessary reviews and approvals, EDF said.
A 20-year life extension has previously been announced as the strategic target for the Sizewell B PWR, and this remains unchanged.
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