Romania’s nuclear plant disconnects reactor after glitch

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One of the reactors has been disconnected from the grid in Cernavodă nuclear power plant, Romania on March 29, 2018, due to a glitch in the electrical system. Nuclearelectrica, the operator of the plant, said the problem occurred on Unit 2 on Thursday and that there was no danger to staff, the public or the environment. According to the company, specialists are investigating the cause and will carry out repairs as necessary.

Earlier, Nuclearelectrica reported that the first Cernavodă power unit was shut down at 09:20 local time on Sunday, March 25, 2018. The second power unit of the nuclear power plant reduced power to 55% (about 300 MW). The problem was fixed on March 26 and reactor back at full power.

The second incident occurred on Thursday, March 29, forcing the operator to disconnect one of the reactors due to a glitch in the electrical system.

On the same day, Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila instructed their monitoring service to carry out an investigation into two incidents.

"There is no connection between reducing Unit 2's capacity on March 25 and today's automatic disconnection," Nuclearelectrica said in a statement.

"S.N. Nuclearelectrica SA ("SNN") announced that Cernavodă NPP Unit 2 was disconnected automatically from SEN during the morning of March 29, 2018, following a dysfunction in the electrical process system in the older part of the power plant," the press release read.

The company stressed that the disconnection of the reactor from the energy system posed no risks to nuclear safety.

"The specialists are investigating the cause and will make the necessary repair work, in compliance with the procedures specific to the nuclear industry for such situations. There is no connection between the power reduction of Unit 2 on March 25, 2018, and the automated disconnection of the reactor today, March 29, 2018," the press release said.

The accident had no impact on the personnel, the general public or the environment, the company added.

Romania's state-owned nuclear power producer Nuclearelectrica has two 706 megawatt reactors at Cernavodă in southeastern Romania. It is the first and only nuclear power plant in Romania, and the largest electricity supplier in the country.

Cernavodă is home to two operating Candu reactors, Units 1 and 2, which came into service in 1996 and 2007 and provide some 20 percent of the country's electricity.

Featured image credit: WANO Comm

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