Kruemmel (Germany)

Map of Kruemmel

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BWR 1260 MW constructed by KWU, operation since 1983
GKSS (Society for the Utilisation of Atomic Energy in Shipbuilding and Shipping Ltd.): Research Facility at Geesthacht, belongs to Helmholtz Society

In Sept. 1986 an accident at GKSS could have occured resulting in the pollution of the so-called Elbmarsch region. Since 2006 15 children suffered from leukemia, significantly more than could be expected. There is an ongoing dispute about the reasons for these leukemia cases, see

Facilities in Kruemmel

plantreactor typconstruction startoperation startshut down
GKSSResearch Facility1956

According to experts, Kruemmel will return to service in 2009 at the earliest. Since the incident in 2007 Krümmel has been shutdown. The delay is mainly due to difficulties in handling SCC (stress corrosion cracking), which was detected in the pimary circuit equipment last year.


Once again there were found and reported latent defects in the northern-germany nuklear power plants Krümmel und Brunsbüttel. Both plants were shut down after incidents in june. During the inspections in Brunsbüttel there were found punched membranes at the valves of the emergency cutout system. In Krümmel they found 14 fissures in the pipeline of the exhaustion system inside and outside of the containment.

Reactor Affected in Nuclear Power Plant Fire

Experts studying the fire of 28th of June were only able to get into the interior of the transformer hall, where they found, that the transformer had been completely destroyed. Officials said, that the fire only affected a transformer in the plant but not the reactor itself and that there was no risk of a radioactivity leak. No one was injured in the fire. However experts who are investigating the cause of the fire have discovered that the reactor was in fact affected. A statement released by the Health Ministry of Schleswig-Holstein reports that the authorities had checked several incidents caused by the shutdown of the reactor. The experts had found that one of the pumps which supply water to the reactor had shut down unexpectedly, and two safety and relief valves had opened accidentally. The result was that the water level and the pressure in the reactor fell quickly. However the drop in water level and pressure could be "balanced out by switching on a reserve supply system", the ministry said. "Despite these incidents, the safety of the facilities was guaranteed," the ministry statement read. The reactor was shut down. When it will be able to go on line again is not clear.


In 2004 11 events rated INES 0 occured according to the BfS annual report.


Failure of the emergency power system at GKSS


During a test a safety pressure relief valve did not close because of stiffness. The temperature in the condensation chamber increased and the reactor had to be shut down manually. This event was rated INES 0.


The external penetration isolation valve of the feed system´s main steam feed line was not able to be closed because of mechanical problems. This was due to a incorrect installation of the valve. This event was rated INES 0.


In 2003 eight events rated INES 0 occured according to the BfS annual report.

When unloading the fuel elements from the reactor core a fuel element hooked itself with a neighbouring item, which was pulled from the core. This hooking was not noticed by the service personnel, because the overload protection of the fuel handling machine was switched off by a software fault. After both fuel elements were situated about 80 centimetres above the reactor core, the hooked item came loose and fell back on the upper grid of the reactor core. During the event no radioactivity was set free, there were no damages for persons employed and the environment. The incident was assigned to the INES level 1 (operational disturbance without radiological consequence). The incident pointed out lacks in the test and monitoring concept of the fuel loading machine. The fuel element loading machine is provided with two overload limit values. In the present case this disconnection did not function, because the limit value processing of the weight monitoring was not function broad. There was no message, which would have displayed this status. A check directly before the line-up of the fuel element loading machine for changing a fuel element, which would have pointed out the error, is not intended.

Europe's largest boiling water reactor, situated in Schleswig Holstein is staying on the grid after a court ruled that no health risks to the population could be proven by two doctors who had attempted to have the plant closed. Yesterday the state supreme administrative court judged that there was no legal or factual basis for the demands of the plaintiffs. The two doctors had tried to force the state energy ministry to have the power station closed and its operating permit withdrawn, blaming emissions caused by technical defects for a cluster of cases of leukaemia close to the Krümmel plant, which have affected 11 children and young people.
However, the judge decided in favour of the plant which sees no connection between the plant and the cases of leukaemia in the results of the many studies which have taken place and data going back to 1983 which have been analysed. The court statement concludes that the Schleswig Holstein senate has not given the plaintiffs leave to appeal but that they may be able to take their complaint to the federal administrative court.


NDE in low pressure system revealed that 2 of 10 valves designed to keep safety valves open during serious accident sequences failed to function; caused by sluggishness - redundant valves would have opend the safety valves, in case the RPV had to be vented; level 1 because more than one valve was affected.


Shutdown for 10th - year inspection; extended examination of ferritic and austenitic pipes five areas with cracks were identified - pipes repaired.
restart was permitted after 14 month (costing HEW DM 100 million (US$ 64 million) for replacement power


Scram: malfunction of a relay in the turbine monitoring system, 2 of 4 turbine trip valves shut. shortly afterwards the other 2 valves closed also, at steam flow levels which were far above normal. examination of the valves revealed stress damage to steam lines. rector power was reduced (turbine valves not fully open to reduce steam throughput), because of a regulatory order. An identical problem had ocurred at Brunsbuettel.l


During testing a penetration valve in the closed cooling water system failed; caused by damage in the valve drive. Second, redundant valve worked.


Turbine cooling water leaks 80 cu. meters of tritiated cooling water for turbine side motors and oil coolers leaked into the ground. The leaking line affects generator cooling and tritium had been added to the coolant to detect the leaks. Total tritium contamination 3 E8 Bq.


During a hurricane 2 of 48 dormer windows in the turbine hall were forced open. Opening of the windows caused a scram and the fresh steam lines to be closed off. When steam lines closed, 1 of 2 sealing valves on a water removal line failed to activate because of a sticking shaft.


Refueling accident: Drop of a irradiated fuel element in the storage pool from 5 m. Damage of the pool bottom.