Sun Dec 04 16:14:56 SAST 2016

Koeberg shuts down

Sapa | 2011-03-14 08:27:23.00 Comments
Eskom pylons. File photo.
Image by: Mark Wessels.

The public are advised not to be alarmed at steam issuing from the Koeberg nuclear power station during the next few days.

"Given the events in Japan, we want to assure the public that perfectly clean steam will issue from next to the reactor during the routine shut," spokesman Tony Stott says.

He says that this was part of the cool down process of unit two, which began on Monday at 1.30am.

The unit will take two to three days to cool down enough for it to be opened for workers to begin the refuelling, maintenance and inspections. Unit one will continue to operate at full power.

Stott says that valves, pumps and high pressure components are among items scheduled for maintenance. One third of the fuel in the reactor will be replaced.

The shut will last about 55 days, and will recommence operations in the first or second week of May.

Once the unit has been reconnected to the power grid, it will take about four days to begin generating electricity. In about a week, the unit will be back up to full power.

Eskom conducts these shut downs during spring, summer and autumn, as in winter the demand for power is higher and hence shut downs are kept to a minimum.

At various stages of the power up, tests will be conducted to ensure all was working correctly.

Stott says unit two provided between 2 and 2.5 percent of South Africa's energy capacity.

Eskom is appealing to the public to not waste electricity.

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