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10 Nov, 2022 07:57

EU country’s biggest nuclear reactor suffers turbine failure

It is the third incident at Sweden’s Oskarshamn plant this year
EU country’s biggest nuclear reactor suffers turbine failure

Sweden’s biggest nuclear reactor was taken off the grid after a turbine failure on Wednesday. It is the third incident at the country’s southern Oskarshamn Nuclear Power Plant this year.

“The issue that caused the shutdown has now been fixed,” Desiree Liljevall, the spokeswoman for the plant’s operator, OKG, said, adding that the reactor will be relaunched soon.

“We know what has happened, but we can’t comment on it,” Liljevall added.

The Oskarshamn facility is one of the country’s three active nuclear power plants. Its reactor is Sweden’s biggest electricity producer.

The reactor was previously shut down for a week in February due to a fuel leak, and later shut down for a day in July.

The plant’s two other reactors stopped operating in the 2010s, as Europe has largely been on course to transition to alternative energy sources and a ‘green economy’.

However, the high inflation rate and the energy crisis prompted countries such as Germany to rethink their approach to nuclear power and postpone the decommissioning of its remaining plants.

At the same time, countries are faced with the goal of modernizing the plants, especially older facilities. The Wall Street Journal reported last month that 26 of France’s 56 nuclear reactors are shut down for maintenance or due to corrosion on the pipes that cool the reactor cores.

French electric company EDF discovered a radioactive leak in the primary cooling circuit at the Civaux Nuclear Power Plant last week. It said that there was no safety risk, and no radioactivity was detected outside of the facility.

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