St. Alban (France)

Map of St. Alban

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2 * 1300 MW PWR constructed by Framatome. operation started 1985/86

Facilities in St. Alban

plantreactor typconstruction startoperation startshut down

For the decompression of the third barrier of confinement certain valves had to be opened.
6 valves have accidentally be left open for several hours.



According to data of the operator approximately 87,000 litres "low radioactive" liquid flowed into the soil. A first analysis of soil samples has stated that the measured radioactivity is clearly under the limit for the human health, explained the national energy company EDF.
The accident occurred during a transfer of the liquid from one container into another. A power station spokeswoman said, that it was a human failure.


The first incident in connection with a strike of CGT workers , happened at the St. Alban-1, during the night of November 29-30, when four control room operators prevented the deputy plant manager from entering the room for three hours. Contrary to statements by EDF officials just afterwards, the men were on duty in the control room at the time. However, preventing access by their superior represented an "unacceptable" violation of safety rules, officials said. Three of the operators were suspended for one month and the fourth for three months.


during refueling it was found that a wrong value had been used for one of the parameters for protecting fuel clad against overheating for more than 2 month. - unit-2 was also affected


During refueling spent fuel pool cooling was interrupted for 7 hours and 40 min. due to a pump failure which was not indicated at control room. temperature of the pool rose by 17°C.


at full power 1 of the 2 trains of CCW system was unavailable for 14 hours. One of its heat exchangers had been cleaned but not put back to service, the other was taken out for cleaning at the same time.


During regular outage filters used to capture loose parts during rinsing of pipework preceding initial startup were discovered upstream of pumps in the reactor cavity and spent fuel pool cooling system.


SI system unavailable because a valve of the SI system had been erroneously closed instead of a valve of the containment spray located in the same room.


Fire in the electrical generator - probably the most serious generator fire in a french plant. Turbine and reactor tripped normally. Fire was caused by a leak of hydrogen from stator cooling. Fire was under control after three hours, but damaged the generator.


EdF has found some 200 defects on main steam lines during inspections. Two of the defects affect welds on connecting pipes leading to safety valves upstream of the MSIV outside containment . The deepest defect reaches 20 mm through the pipewall (1/3 of its thickness). Level 2 , because of potential safety significance.


inspection revealed defects on 2 RPV head penetrations


fuel handling accident: a fuel assembly got out of balance and striked the head of another assembly.


During the refueling outage some 150 tubes in the SGs were found to be constricted at their bottom end. Particularly hard and corrosive sludge was found on the tubesheets. Sludge collection and swelling and subsequent damage of SG tubes was determined to be a generic problem of EdF's 1300 MW units.