Barsebaeck (Sweden)

Map of Barsebaeck

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2* 600 MW BWR units; constructed by ABB. Commercial operation started in 1975 and 1977. Barsebaeck Unit 1 was shut down in 1999, Unit 2 in 2005.

Facilities in Barsebaeck

plantreactor typconstruction startoperation startshut down

The Swedish government has confirmed its decision to close unit two of the Barsebäck nuclear power plant. In a statement the government said electricity generation at the unit must end by 31st May 2005. It is probable that the demolition of Barsebäck-1 and -2 will be conducted as a joint project, said a statement on the Barsebäck website. This, according to the present timetable, will mean that a pilot project will be initiated around 2015 and demolition of Barsebäck would start sometime around 2020.
Barsebäck-2 produces 3.5 to 4.5 terawatt hours (TWh) electricity per year, providing as much as 30% of the electricity used in the southernmost part of Sweden.


The Swedish Social Democratic government has agreed with two political parties in the Swedish parliament, the Center Party and the Leftist Party, to close down the Barsebaeck NPPs unit 2 in 2005. Barsebaeck would not be closed because of old age or because it was not technically up to standard, but because it was located in the wrong place. The nuclear plant is situated only 20 km from the centre of the Danish capital Copenhagen.


A water leakage from the containment was reported in 2003. During the fall shut down the cause of the leakage was identified where a ladder was welded to the bottom plate of the condensation pool. The defect weld had caused corrosion. The repair was successful.


Tie-joints with thermal sleeves installed at the 2002 refuelling outage in the feed-water lines loosened under operation and partly blocked the feed-water flow. Flow mismatch betwwen the two lines and pressure differences were detected, but the plant was not stopped for investigation untig January 2003. It was the detected that the tie-pins of the sleeves had failed due to feed-water flow induced vibrations. Parts of metal from the sleeves and the support pins were found at the bottom of the reactor pressure vessel, although without any identified duel cladding damage. This event was rated INES level 1.


Extensive stress corrosion cracking was observed years ago in consoles and supports of the emergency core spray systems. Most of the damaged supports were replaced. Follow-ups in 2002 showed that some of the remaining cracks had propagated, but no new cracks were identified.


A rupture disc of the containment venting filter system showed to be wrongly fitted. This event was rated at INES level 2.


The second reactor at the Barsebäck nuclear power station will close within two years under the country's nuclear phase-out programme. Growth of new renewable energy capacity, which is supposed to replace half of Barsebäck's electrical output is on schedule. The other half of Barsebäck's output should be replaced by substitution of electrical heating and energy efficiency measures.


The Swedish government has won the right from the parliament to sign a compensation agreement for early shutdown of Barsebaeck-1 without seeking parliamentary approval.
The decision is a key victory for the Social Democratic government, since it allows for more flexible negotiation.
In February, the government ordered decommissioning of Barsebaeck-1, owned by Sydkraft A, by July 1. While closure has been postponed pending legal proceedings, negotiations on compensation for an early shutdown are continuing. Trade & Industry Minister Anders Sundstroem has said the government is also discussing compensation for a shutdown of Barsebaeck-2 which it has ordered shut by July 1, 2001.


Initial improvements aimed at reducing the risk of a serious accident with core damage will be made within weeks at Sweden's Oskarshamn-2 and the two Barsebaeck units, and longer-term plans for changes are also being made.

In May, preliminary probabilistic safety analysis (PSA) at Oskarshamn-2 indicated that the likelihood of a serious accident with core damage was between 10E-3 and 10E-4 , because of station blackout sequences involving loss of power emergency generator failure.

Regulators expected a similar result at Barsebaeck, because the units are almost identical. Preliminary PSA results from Barsebaeck, sent to the Swedish Nuclear Power Inspectorate (SKI) show a frequency just over 10E-4. Plant management said the figures were better than Oskarshamn´s because the electrical systems at Barsebaeck are slightly different.

Barsebaeck is looking at improvements that could be made during next year's outages. They generally involve better separation and redundancy in electrical systems to prevent total failure.


A Barsebaeck PSA estimated a core damage frequency slightly above 10-4.
Sydkraft, which owns Barsebaeck and Oskarshamn, aims for a risk factor of 10-5, which Swedish regulators say is difficult for older units to achieve.


During outage routine checks revealed a crack in a stainless steel weld in the RCS.
Further investigation of 30 welds uncovered five additional cracks, the longest 150 mm; The deepest is 7 mm in welds ranging from 13 to 17,5 mm .
he repair of six cracks was done by PCI Energy services, based in Illinois that has gained experience with similar repairs in US BWRs. (cost: 2,9 million $).


Operating costs for Swedens NPPs are on average higher than what the industry claims, according to a report done for the government's energy commission. The report was done by a Swedish accounting firm and the conclusions reported by a business paper.
operating costs for unit-2 : 18-19 oere (0,02 US$)


Inspection during outage revealed a crack in the weld of a connecting pipe of the main circulation system. Inspections have been ordered by SKI after cracks were discovered in the MCP casings at Oskarshamn`s unit-1.


Shutdown because of a leaking valve in ECCS.


During maintenance outage five holes were discovered in the 7 mm thick carbon steel plate that acts as a leakage barrier on the bottom of the containment.


Steam leaked from a valve inside reactor containment at unit-1. Leak rate 2 liters/hour led to shutdown of the unit; The valve had to be replaced.


Circumferential crack 6-8 mm deep, 25 mm long has been found in a weld in the main recirculation pipe of unit-1 just above the MCP caused by stress corrosion - the pipe is made of wrought stainless steel with high carbon content. In 1988 a 180 ° counter clockwise crack was found in the same weld!


Failure of a primary system safety valve (during startup operation) - opened at only half pressure and blew primary steam into the containment. Some nearby pipes were damaged . Opening of the valve was not indicated at the control room, because of a maintenance fault. The steam spray and subsequent containment sprinkler system knocked insulation material loos and down to the containment floor, where it clogged the sieves above the condensation pool - SKI ordered the shutdown of the 5 first-generation BWRs in Sweden, because the incident showed that the sieves above the reactor's condensation pools can become clogged with ECCS piping insulation in as little as 20 min. preventing circulation of cooling water - "the possibility for an accident is greater than we thought", said Hoegberg/SKI
Barsebeck was granted permission for restart in January 1993.


Fire protection safety inspection at unit-1 found that the sprinkler system doesn't conform to the plant's own specifications: The channels through which water flows in the sprinkler system are not the right dimension, and therefore, even when some parts of the system were replaced, the dimensions will be wrong. The sprinkler problem is one of the first on a 25 points list of fire protection improvements. Other planned improvements are: fire seperation between control rooms; improving seals on the fire doors; decreasing the amount of flammable material in transportation corridors.


During refueling outage failure of the operating RHR pump caused the water temperature in pressure vessel to increase from 50°C to about 98°C. The pump trip was caused by a suction valve failure. Operators in the control room during the beginning of the refueling exercise did not notice that water temperature had increased. The increase was noticed only when the lid to the RPV was removed and a release of steam ocurred.