Karlsruhe. In the early hours on 24th july 2015 Block 2 of the Philippsburg nuclear power plant (KKP 2) has been back online following the completion of its annual inspection. Over the past few weeks, testing and maintenance work was completed, fuel elements were replaced and a number of technical projects were implemented.
“We have once again invested in the high level of safety of our power plant with this year’s inspection of KKP 2. The successfully completed activities ensure that the power plant is kept completely up-to-date from a technological standpoint”, explains Christoph Heil, the Managing Director of EnBW Kernkraft GmbH responsible for power plant operations. “The nuclear power plants Philippsburg 2 and Neckarwestheim II continue to be important components for ensuring a stable supply of electricity in Baden-Württemberg. The two plants generated in total more than 21.5 billion kilowatt hours of electricity in 2014. This corresponds to around one third of the entire electricity consumption in our state of Baden-Württemberg. The power plants provide the flexibility that will be required for the further expansion of renewable energies because they can compensate for the fluctuations in production experienced with wind and solar power plants.”
Comprehensive inspection work successfully implemented
“We are very satisfied with the progression of this year’s inspection work. All of the planned activities were successfully implemented. The cooperation between our own employees and those from external companies worked very well. Around 4,600 individual activities were completed in total, most of which could only be performed when the plant had been shut down.” reports Thomas Franke, Head of the KKP 2 power plant. “The programme not only included routine work but also numerous maintenance measures on large-scale components, such as the inspection of one of the four main coolant pumps and pressure testing of two of the four steam generators. In addition, one of the six main coolant water circuits was inspected and the pump rotor replaced in one of the six main coolant water pumps. Maintenance was carried out on the motors for four of the eight emergency power generators. Furthermore, a transformer that was replaced last year and reconditioned by the manufacturer was reinstalled. Finally, there was also a comprehensive inspection of the generator.” Around 800 additional experts from manufacturing and specialist companies supported the extensive inspection work.
The inspection work took place under the supervision of the Baden-Württemberg Ministry for the Environment, Climate Protection and the Energy Industry and was accompanied by auditors from TÜV and KeTAG (Baden-Württemberg Auditors Consortium for Nuclear Technology) appointed by the ministry. Following acceptance of the work, the Ministry gave its approval for the power plant block to be restarted.
Block 2 of the Philippsburg nuclear power plant is a pressurised water reactor with an electrical output of 1,468 megawatts. The power plant was commissioned in 1984 and generated around ten billion kilowatt hours of electricity in 2014.
Block 2 is operated by EnBW Kernkraft GmbH (EnKK). EnKK stands for safety in the operation and post operation, as well as the decommissioning and dismantling of the nuclear power plants in Baden-Württemberg. In Neckarwestheim and Philippsburg, EnKK generates electricity with one nuclear power plant at each location (GKN II and KKP 2). A further power plant that no longer produces electricity is located at each of the sites (GKN I and KKP 1). EnKK is currently preparing for the decommissioning of those power plants that have been shut down and has submitted the first applications to this end. Good progress has been made with the dismantling of the nuclear power plant at the Obrigheim location since 2008.