Karlsruhe. Block 1 of the Philippsburg nuclear power station (KKP 1) is back on the grid. It was withdrawn from the grid the weekend before last by the operator, EnBW Kernkraft GmbH, and shut down. Safety-orientated reactions by EnBW were the reasons behind the decision. A defective fuel element was replaced during standstill. To achieve optimal use of fuels and under consideration of physical reactor aspects, eight further fuel elements were replaced as a result. All remaining fuel elements were also checked. Intensive examinations on the defective fuel element will take place at a later date. The supervisory authorities are informed about the plans.
For further information:
Fuel element: so-called fuel elements are arranged in the reactor's pressure tank in order to produce energy – there are 592 in KKP 1. Vertical fuel rods are fixed inside them. A fuel element consists of 96 fuel rods in KKP 1. Uranium oxide tablets are found inside. During operation, water flows from beneath along the fuel rods and is heated up. It leaves the reactor core at the top transporting the reactor core's produced energy heat. During a fuel element exchange, fuel elements are replaced and implemented for optimal use of fuels and under consideration of physical reactor aspects.
KKP 1: Block 1 of the Philippsburg nuclear power station is a boiling water nuclear reactor with an electrical output of 926 megawatts. The facility started operations in 1979 and produced around 6.5 billion kilowatt hours of electricity in the year 2009.