Karlsruhe. Unit 1 of the Philippsburg nuclear power plant (KKP 1) was routinely taken offline yesterday, Easter Monday, for annual maintenance. During shutdown of the reactor in the early hours of the morning, a premature automatic reactor trip occurred. The cause of this notifiable event is currently being investigated.
“The bulk of the work consists of routine activities. These include the wetwell inspection, reheater pressure inspection and maintenance on one of the two low-pressure turbines among other things,” says Roman Zofka, unit 1 director. “We will also inspect the feedwater tank casings in the pressure vessel and improve their construction. Furthermore, the replacement of the condenser tubes which was begun in 2004 will be completed, and construction and maintenance work will be carried out on the cooling water intake.”
“After we undertook the most comprehensive maintenance work in the history of the plant last year, the result of several large individual projects being carried out together, this year is characterized more by routine maintenance,” explains Roman Zofka. “We are spending an eight-figure sum on the maintenance, which means we are again investing a large amount in the continued safe operation of the plant.” Around 1,200 manufacturing- and specialized-company personnel will be on hand to support the KKP maintenance team. The entire team has around 4,500 individual tasks to perform.
The maintenance will be followed by the Technical Inspection Authority (TÜV), which acts as a consultant for the Baden-Wuerttemberg Department of the Environment, the KeTAG (Baden-Wuerttemberg Nuclear Power Consultant Consortium) and the MPA (state material research laboratory, Stuttgart). After the maintenance has been approved, the Baden-Wuerttemberg Department of the Environment issues its consent for the plant to be restarted.
Unit 1 of the Philippsburg nuclear power facility is a boiling water reactor with a capacity of 926 MWe. The plant was commissioned in 1979 and it produced over 6 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in 2005.