Koeberg's Unit 2 resumes operations

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Pretoria - Unit 2 of the Koeberg nuclear power station has resumed sending power to the national electricity grid.

“Unit 2 of the Koeberg nuclear power station has today resumed sending power onto the national electricity grid after a planned outage that lasted for 36 days. Outage 222 – the twenty-second outage on Unit 2 – is the second shortest outage performed in the station’s history,” said Eskom on Wednesday.

The shortest outage was a 32-day outage on Unit 1 in 1999.

Outage 222 was a maintenance and refuelling outage, requiring the reactor to be shut down as not all work can be done while the unit is in operation. During this outage, about one third of the fuel in the reactor core is replaced with new fuel.

Koeberg power station manager Velaphi Ntuli said an outage at a nuclear installation requires detailed planning in order to ensure that nuclear safety is not compromised and that the unit starts generating power again as soon as possible.

“With Koeberg being a base load power station (which runs continuously unless it is taken out of service for an outage), the nuclear professionals working at the power station are fully aware of the need for the power station to have both units running at full capacity.

“In this outage, they safely executed approximately 15 300 activities, following strict protocols, to ensure that the unit runs reliably until its next refuelling outage,” said Ntuli.

During Unit 2’s outage, Unit 1 was operating at 100% power, powering up the City of Cape Town.

It will take a few days for Unit 2 to get up to 100% reactor power, as several tests need to be performed as it increases in power output. – SAnews.gov.za

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