Karlsruhe. Unit 2 of the Philippsburg nuclear power plant (KKP 2) was taken offline early today for routine annual maintenance. Over the coming weeks, testing and maintenance activities will be carried out during which 40 of the 193 fuel elements will be replaced.
“Once again, this maintenance work will ensure that Unit 2 is up to date with the latest technological developments,” explains Horst Janisch, Plant Director. “As in previous years, alongside the usual routine tasks other more complex work will also take place. One of the main tasks will be to inspect several large pumps, including a main coolant pump, a feed water pump, a main condensation pump and two main water coolant pumps. We will run an internal check on two of the four steam generators. Construction and maintenance work will also be carried out on one of the water cooling channels.” In total, over 4,000 separate tasks will be performed. To complete these tasks, the KKP maintenance team will this year be assisted by around 1,200 additional personnel from manufacturing and specialist companies.
Safety takes priority over profitability
“In the current climate, our orders with manufacturing and specialist companies are playing an important role in helping to stabilize business and secure jobs within our industry,” explains Christoph Heil, Technical Director of the Philippsburg Nuclear Power Plant. “When it comes to maintenance, one thing is certain: we don’t cut corners concerning the scope of the work. We prioritise safety over commercial concerns, which is why we invested over ten million euros again this year to maintain the high level of safety at our plant.”
The maintenance work will be carried out under the supervision of the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of the Environment, and will be monitored on behalf of the ministry by consultants from the Technical Inspection Authority (TÜV) and KeTAG (the Baden-Württemberg Nuclear Power Consultant Consortium).
Unit 2 of the Philippsburg nuclear power plant is a pressurised water reactor that produces 1,458 megawatts of electricity. The plant came into operation in 1984 and generated around 11.5 billion kilowatt hours of power in 2008. Unit 2 is operated by EnBW Kernkraft GmbH (EnKK). EnKK operates the nuclear power plants in Neckarwestheim and Philippsburg as well as the Obrigheim power plant that is now being shut down.