EDF extends outage of damaged Paluel 2 reactor

19 April 2016

EDF has extended the outage period for unit 2 of its Paluel NPP until March 2017 after a 450t steam generator crashed onto the reactor floor during handling in March. The 1,300MWe Paluel 2 was shut down in May 2015 for its 10-yearly inspection and was expected to be back on line in May this year. According to French grid operator RTE's website, the reactor is now expected to be back online in March 2017. Immediately following the accident EDF moved back the expected restart to end December this year. Philippe Sasseigne, EDF head of nuclear production in France, said in a note to staff recently, that the accident was a major setback which would have important consequences for the availability of the plant. A nuclear engineer familiar with EDF's reactor fleet said the impact may have damaged the concrete reactor building as well as the attachment of the plant's piping. He said that removing the fallen generator and inspecting the entire plant for damage, similar to a seismic shock, could take up to two years.

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