Bulgaria's Nuclear Plant Back in Business by November 6
The spare parts needed by Bulgaria's Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) Kozloduy arrived in Bulgaria overnight with an IL-16 aircraft of the "Volga-Dnepr" airline, the Bulgarian National Radio, BNR, reports Saturday.
Minutes after the plane's landing, at 2 am local time at the Sofia airport, the pipes have been loaded on trucks, which left for the Danube town of Kozloduy. Their installation is to last about one week, experts say.
On October 19, Economy and Energy Minister, Traicho Traikov, announced that a problem with one of the two functioning reactors of Bulgaria's Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) - Unit 6, can trigger serious delays in its switching back to the country's electric network.
A check of the system managing the reactor's safety protection located damage in the equipment's cap and the need of replace 31 out of 61 pipes total.
The new parts were shipped by the manufacturer – the Russian "Hydropress" owned by Rosatom.
Traikov said at the time that each day of the delay would amount to BGN 1.5 M in losses.
Initially, the Russian company replied they would need about 7 to 8 months to make and deliver the parts, however, after not only the Minister's interference, but also the personal one of Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, who spoke on the phone with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, the fast delivery was given a green light.
In an interview for Darik radio Saturday, Traikov said Unit 6 would be back in business by November 6.
Unit 6 was turned off for its scheduled annual repairs and refueling on September 18 and was expected to begin functioning again at the end of October.
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Maybe interesting to remember, that these are the same control rod systems that had an INES 2 problem back in 2006, when a third of the control rods could not automatically fall down. They were installed after an "upgrade" carried out by Hydropress. The new control rod system now has cracks at the top for almost half of the rods and a new system had to be flown in.
All this should be a warning for the quality of work delivered by Rosatom... Not only for Kozloduy, but also if anyone pleads for Belene to be constructed.
Bulgaria does not need nuclear power - it needs to adapt its grid to the large uptake of renewable sources like wind, solar, geothermal, biogas and solid biomass and micro-generation (hydro, wind, solar)... It needs to invest in energy efficiency...