A NEW nuclear reactor at Flamanville – less than 30 miles from Jersey – is fit for purpose despite weak spots in its steel structure, France’s nuclear regulator has said. In 2015 Autorité de Sûreté Nucléaire [nuclear safety authority] raised concerns over ‘excessive levels’ of carbon within the reactor vessel, warning that it could lead to weaknesses within the structure. It was the latest setback for the project, which has been plagued by delays and has seen construction costs soar from 3.3 billion euros to 10.5 billion euros. The reactor – Flamanville-3 – was due to be operational by 2012 but has still not yet come into service. The go-ahead came in the form of a provisional ruling by the ASN. A final ruling will be given in October. ‘The ASN considers that there are sufficient safety margins in order to start up the reactor,’ ASN director Pierre-Franck Chevet told Reuters on Wednesday. And although the regulator has given the reactor its approval, it said the utility firm will have to replace the reactor cover by 2024 at the latest.

Jersey Evening Post 29th June 2017 read more »

[Machine Translation] While acknowledging its weaknesses, the nuclear gendarme should authorize the entry into service of the Flamanville EPR reactor at the end of next year. In return, EDF will have to multiply the controls, some of which are impossible to achieve. And change the lid of the reactor vessel “as soon as possible”. The conference room of the Nuclear Safety Authority (ASN) was full on Wednesday afternoon. After months of suspense, the regulator of the nuclear park was to return its “position” about the future of the flagship of the tricolor atomic industry: the Flamanville EPR. In a few minutes, the case is dispatched. What do you expect from the ASN? Work will continue in Flamanville. If all goes well, the third reactor is expected to start at the end of 2018. Prudente, EDF has ordered, from April, a Japanese blacksmith a new tank lid. In Pierre-Franck Chevet’s opinion, the machine should be ready to install in 2024, six years after the reactor is commissioned! Cost: a hundred million euros. A drop of water, compared to the 10.5 billion already engulfed by EDF in the largest construction site in France.

Journal de l’environement 28th June 2017 read more »

[Machine translation] Green light for the EPR tank: an “aberrant” and “irresponsible” decision for Greenpeace. The Nuclear Safety Authority announced on Wednesday, through its president, that the tank of the EPR had sufficient guarantees to put into operation the third generation nuclear reactor. Yannick Rousselet, of Greenpeace, strongly reacted on our antenna to this decision. “It is often considered that the ASN (Nuclear Safety Authority) is doing its job very well, but unfortunately this time it was under considerable pressure, it is obvious that the decision should be only of safety. Seen a discussion of carpet dealers because it is the future of the nucélaire industry is at stake, “lamented this Wednesday evening on our antenna Yannick Rousselet, specialist in nuclear issues at Greenpeace France.

France Info 29th June 2017 read more »


Published: 30 June 2017