22.05.2020 – The Beznau nuclear power plant (KKB) has completed refurbishment work on Unit 1 and reconnected the reactor to the grid today following the approval of the Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate (ENSI). It was possible to complete the work on schedule despite all the corona-related restrictions and additional efforts.
The focus of refurbishment comprised maintenance work, recurring tests and inspections. In addition, integral system tests were carried out as usual. Of the 121 fuel assemblies, 20 were replaced with new elements and installed in the reactor core.
As usual during a restart, KKB will also conduct various, additional safety tests on Unit 1 and gradually take up full-load operation. The plant will be back to full load in three days.
During refurbishment the approx. 460 employees at KKB were supported by some 400 external specialists from the region, as well as from Switzerland and abroad. KKB implemented strict measures to prevent the spread of the corona-virus and to protect its own and external staff. Entrance checkpoints, strict adherence to hygiene and distancing rules, health check-ups, quarantine in suspected cases, split operation and home office proved to be effective. No corona-virus infections occurred.
At times, visible steam will be emitted from the non-nuclear section of the plant during the restart. This does not pose any danger to human beings or the environment.
All work was supervised by the Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate ENSI.