Goesgen (Switzerland)

Map of Goesgen

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PWR 940 MW, constructed by KWU, in operation since 1979

Facilities in Goesgen

plantreactor typconstruction startoperation startshut down

2010 Nuclear incidents annual report

In 2010 42 notifiable incidents occurred in Swiss nuclear power plants. 41 of the events were classified as INES 0, one event as INES 2.
- Gösgen: 11 incidents
- Beznau: 4 incidents
- Leibstadt: 5 incidents
- Mühleberg: 14 incidents

The INES 2 event occured in the NPP Leibstadt during inspection works.

(source: http://www.ensi.ch)


Slightly increased levels of Iodine and inert gases were found during routine measurements in the primary circuit.
The increased values are due to a leckage in the cladding tube of a fuel rod. The defected fuel rod will be detected and replaced during the general fuel renewal in 2009.


In the NPP Gösgen two redundant rectifiers of the emergency system were out of order at the same time


Atel ...

nuclear power plant to come online in Sitzerland since the Leibstadt BWR in 1984. Switzerland had a moratorium on new nuclear construction between 1990 and 2000, as a consequence of a previous referendum.
Cost of the Niederamt project to be US $ 5.7 billion to $ 6.7 billion.
Meier said Atel, Axpo and BKW FMB Energie have been negotiating for about a month on partnerships for nuclear power plant construction.

In February 2007, Switzerland´s Federal Executive Council decided in principle to build additional power reactors. Atel said its decision to apply for a license to construct the power plant was in line with the council´s decision.

Meier said the "best" option for the new reactor would have been to build a second unit on the Goesgen site, but there was no room. Building the unit on adjacent land owned by Atel would take the maximum advantage of the Goesgen infrastructure.
Atel is considering two reactor options: a 1,100-MW-class LWR and a 1,600-MW LWR.


Swiss utility Atel applies to build nuclear power plant near Goesgen

Kernkraftwerk Niederamt AG, a subsidiary of Swiss utility Atel Holding AG, filed an application on June 9 with Switzerland´s Federal Energy Office to build a new nuclear power station at a site adjacent to the Goesgen PWR in the canton of Solothurn, the company announced that day.
Atel owns 40% of Goesgen and 27% of the Leibstadt BWR.
The Niederamt project has been under preparation for several years.
No decision on the permit application will be made until Switzerland holds a national referendum on construction of a sixth nuclear power reactor, the company said.
Andreas Meier said the referendum would likely be held in 2010 or 2011 and that - assuming the project is approved - the subsequent licensing process would last at least three years. Given five years´ construction lead time, he said, the new reactor could be ready to operate between 2020 and 2023.
The project would be the first.


Failure to close a containment isolation valve during a functional test. This event was rated INES level 0.


Failure to start a nuclear service water pump during a functional test. This event was rated INES level 0.


The nuclear power station is switched off because of a leaky seal at the head of the reactor pressure vessel. Only on 28 June the plant had been released after the yearly revision for operation. Konstantin Bachmann, press speaker of the KKG said, that the internal seal at the of the reactor vessel head is concerned. No radioactivity escaped, because the external seal does not gutter. A monitor had indicated the leakage. Konstantin Bachmann explained that the damage might be caused by corrosions in the internal sealing groove. The defects points eliminated by spot welding.
The to sealing rings had been replaced during the yearly revision.
The head department for the security of the nuclear installations (HSK) was informed about the disconnection planned by the KKG. After the 20 days of yearly revision the plant was turned on again on Friday. In accordance with HSK the revision had not given any cause for objections.


The management announced that reconstruction is planned for 120 millions Swiss Francs. A new storage hall for spent fuel elements is to be built and the pressure suppression system of the reactor cooling circuit to be re-tooled. Today the KKG has storage capacity for 600 spent fuel elements. The new hall will be finished in autumn 2006.
The new storage pool, which is planned outside of the reactor building, will be able to accommodate 1'000 fuel elements. According to KKG the bunkered hall is going to resist aircraft crashes and earthquakes. The construction costs amount to 67 millions Swiss Francs. The request for the construction and operating allowance of the new storage will be delivered to the Bundesrat at the end of June.
The KKG justifies the investment with the use of fuel rods suitable for longer actual working time and reprocessed fuel elements. These would have to be cooled during eight to 16 years in the wet storage. The today's space conditions are enough for the next five years cooling period.


Loss of power to an emergency busbar during a functionality test. This event was rated INES level 0.


Power loss to an emergency busbar during a functionality test. This event was rated INES level 0.


Failure to isolate the grid supply switch on an emergency busbar during a functionality test. This event was rated INES level 0.


Failure to start of an emergency diesel motor during a functionality test. This event was rated INES level 0.


For the first time in Switzerland, a nuclear plant operator
has appealed against safety measures imposed by the national nuclear safety agency. The conglomerate of six mostly private regional energy producers that runs the plant made its appeal earlier this year.

At stake is a series of steps suggested to form part of
Goesgen's first global safety assessment since it began
operating in 1984. The safety assessment steps were
finalised in April. The power station operator rejected
several of the measures as being more stringent than those
usually applied to other Western nuclear plants. No further
details are available because the case is now subject to
legal proceedings.
The measures HSK had requested were based on assessments made on similar plants in Germany.


Europe's first international rail shipment of spent nuclear fuel since May last year left the Gösgen-Däniken power station in Switzerland yesterday, bound for the French
reprocessing plant at La Hague. A spokesperson for power station operator KKG said he was "very happy" and "relieved" that the shipment had left as scheduled. To enable its
departure, police had to remove Greenpeace protesters who had chained themselves to a large block of metal placed on the rails. All movements of spent nuclear fuel were suspended in France, Germany and Switzerland last year after spots of surface radioactivity were found on containers and railway wagons. France resumed domestic transports two months later, but in Germany the ban has still not been lifted and the issue has now become embroiled in larger political arguments over the
government's planned phase-out of nuclear power

In May 2000, 38 Greenpeace Switzerland activists were convicted and fined by a regional tribunal last week. They were accused of repeatedly obstructing the transport of spent nuclear fuel from three Swiss nuclear power stations to reprocessing plants at La Hague in France and Sellafield in the UK. The organisation had been demonstrating its opposition to the recycling of spent nuclear fuel, which the
Swiss government plans to phase out.

The verdict is one of the toughest against Greenpeace Switzerland. During the trial the organisation used arguments based on legitimate defence relative to public health and the environment. In particular they use two articles from the Swiss nuclear law that forbids submitting individuals to ionising radiation and imposes heavy fines for anyone breaking the law.


Failure of the generator breaker of an emergency diesel generator during a functionality test. This event was rated INES level 0.