Temelin (Czech Republic)

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Current status

2 new reactors are planned: Temelin 3/Temelin 4

The EIA-scoping phase has already been finished in 2008.
The statement to the scoping document published by the Austrian government can be found here:


Authors of the document are the Austrian Institute of Ecology (lead part: www.ecology.at),
the Austrian Energy Agency (www.energyagency.at) und the University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna (http://www.boku.ac.at/)

The Environmental Impact Statement haas been published by CEZ in July 2010 and will be open
for statement from neighbouring countries in August 2010.

2 * 1000 MW WWER 1000 reactors in operation

The decision to construct a nuclear power plant at Temelin was made in 1980, four units with VVER-1000 type 320 reactors were planned. The contract for the supply of the technical design from the former USSR was signed in 1982. This design included the reactor, auxiliary buildings and diesel generator stations. The design of the balance of the plant was entirely in the hands of the Czech party, according to the contract. The basic design of Temelin units 1 and 2 was completed by the Czech architect?designer company Energoprojekt (EGP) of Prague in 1985. The site licence was issued in 1985 and the construction licence in November 1986. Actual construction of the buildings started in February 1987.

After 1989 new analyses of the design safety level were performed. In March 1993 the government of decided that construction of Temelin would be completed with only two units.

International missions to the Temelin NPP date from the beginning of the 1990s. These missions carried out evaluations of the original Russian design and the safety standard of the plant.
Two IAEA missions took place in 1990 and one 1992. (Pre-OSART)
In 1991 CEZ contracted the consulting company Halliburton NUS (USA) to perform an independent audit focused on the plant's technical concept. The audit team concluded that the overall technical concept of Temelin was in many respects consistent with Western nuclear power plant standards of the mid 1990s. The shortcomings Halliburton found could be removed by changes in the design. These included the addition of a new instrumentation and control (I&C) system, improved fuel and core design, improvements resulting from VVER and PWR operating experience. In addition, some analyses were performed by Colenco of Switzerland and TÜV Bayern of Germany, which specifically assessed the I&C design.
As result of the recommendations made by the international audits significant changes were carried out, including the replacement of the following items:
- the I&C system;
- the core and nuclear fuel;
- the radiation monitoring system;
-the diagnostic system, which has also been supplemented;
- cables (replaced with fire-retardant and fire-resistant ones

Contractor was Westinghouse which provided the fuel, the I&C system, safety analyses and the emergency response guidelines.

In September 2000 the fuel was loaded into the core. In November Temelín 1 begun with the start-up tests. In June 2002 Temelín 1 started with trial operation.
In December 2002 Temelín 2 begun with start-up tests. In April 2003 trial operation started.

A planned interim storage facility for spent fuel in Temelín was assessed with an cross-border Environmental Impact Assessment. Austria took part in all stages of this EIA-process which started in 2003 and was finished in 2005. The first license was issued by SUJB on 11.1.2006, the second license by the builidng authority of Budweis was issued on 25.10.2006.
The spent fuel is now stored in the cooling pond of the NPP which has a capacity until 2013.

More infos: http://www.umweltbundesamt.at/umwelt/uvpsupemas/espooverfahren/zwilagtemelin/

Facilities in Temelin

plantreactor typconstruction startoperation startshut down
Temelin Interim StorageInterim Storage for Spent Fuel

Reactor one of Temelin was automatically disconnected from the power grid after a problem in the non nuclear part of the NPP. Temelin officials state, that the incident resulted from mistake at the planned maintenance of the pump - the control system disconnected the reactor therefore automatically. Within a week the reactor shall be re-connected.


The first reactor-block of Temelin had to be shutdown due to an incident: The breakdown of the switchgear had stopped the main circulation pump. The incident happend in the morning, the block was reconnected to the grid before midnight.


The reactor refueling operation in block 1 has been finished. 49 fuel assemblies with a new kind of fuel material were put into the reactor, where at the moment are 91 modernized fuel assemblies out of 163 at all. Block 1 will start with the production of electricity in about one month, after being off line since august.


1500 liters of cooling liquid leaked from reactorblock number 1. No radioactivity escaped. The decontamination works will take about two weeks.


2000 liters of cooling liquid leaked from reactorblock number 1. No radioactivity escaped.


According to the annual report of the SUJB, the Czech state office for nuclear safety, in 2006 there were 28 incidents that were rated with INES 0 and 4 that were rated with INES 1.


The Building Authority in Budweis issued the site license for the Interim Storage for Spent Fuel.


The turbine of the first block was automatically disconnected at 5:30, the reactor output was reduced to 37%.
"The incident was caused by humidity in an electric part of the turbine in a non-atomar part of the nuclear power plant" Milan Nebesar, speaker for Temelin, announced.
As soon as the reason for the problem has been found the reactor will be reconnected to the grid.


One of the Temelin-reactors has to be disconnected from the net by the end of the week for several hours because of an oil leakage at a non-atomic part of the power plant. Milan Nebesar, the spokesman of Temelin, declared that there would be no safety risk.


100 - 200 liters of nitric acid escaped through a leak in an overground pipeline. The fire brigade neutralized the acid with calcium carbonate. The health of the workers was not endagered. The incident was not subject to registration, as.


Leakage of the condensate at Temelin-2 because of an unclosed hand-operated valve.


The Upper Austria's Commissioner for Foreign Nuclear Facilities Radko Pavlovec critized SUJB that it should have stopped operation in unit 1 at the end of the year 2005 because of the increasing malfunctions of the control rods. According to Pavlovec these failures are caused by deformed fuel.


Drop-out of the main coolant pump at unit 1 because of improper function of pressure measurement on seal of one of four main coolant pumps. In reaction to drop-out of the main coolant pump, the limitation system was activated and one of the safety clusters group was inserted into the active core. During this process, improper signalisation of lower positions of clusters was identified and investigated. The final decision was adopted to prepare a new set of tests and measurements of dropping time of clusters. This event is classified as INES 0.


Incident at reactorblock 1: Due to a technical problem with the pump of the cooling system the reactor had to be disconnected from the grid. No radioactive release took place.


A small leak at unit 2 was identified by the operating personnel. As the most probable resource of this leak the venting pipeline of the steam generator (SG) No.2 or SG No.3 was identified. At the time of the event the unit was in preparation for restart after approx. 3 weeks maintenance outage. Start-up procedures were interrupted. According to SUJB there was no release of radioactivity out controlled area, and no risk to outside environment.


SUJB issued the site license for the Interim Storage for Spent Fuel after §9 Abs. 1 lit.a of the Czech Nuclear Law.


In 2005 according to SUJB 43 events occured which were rated INES 0, and 5 events rated INES 1.


Ines level 1 events at Temelin in 2005:
1) Uni 1: the reactor was shut down and the decay heat power was removed by core cooling low-pressure pumps, one of the pumps was shut down by spurious high-pressure signal for coolant in the primary circuit.
2) Unit 1: repeated non-start-up of one of the three system dieselgenerators at regular test because of faulty regulation of fuel supply
3) Unit 2: In April, when the planned refuelling outage took place at the unit, the line ensuring nominal feeding of power to the unit failed due to the error caused by the supplier's employee. The off-site power reserve was not available.
In July, at unit start-up after refuelling, the start-up of steam generator emergency feeding pumps was spuriously activated.
Non-functional fans were detected again on two systems in July at the check run of the steam generator emergency feeding pump, since they were electrically interlocked. The fans ensure cooling of the pump rooms. Both valves were interlocked in the time of outage and their interlocking was not detected in a timely manner due to inconsistent access of the operating personnel during specified inspections.


During refill of the reacor of unit 2 the primary coolant overflew. Approximately 3 m3 were collected. According to SUJB there was no release of radioactive substances outside the controlled area, and no personal contamination had occured.


76th incident in Temelin: A few days ago a cooling generator had a defect. During power raise a defect in the secondary circuit occured.


In 2004 according to SUJB 41 events occured which were rated INES 0, and 3 events rated INES 1.


A power increase after an outage occured at Temelin-2. Because of the overfilling of a primary coolant drainage tank 20 m3 of water contaminated by boric acid overflowed from the tank into an operational room. The cause of the event was inoperable measurement of the level in the tank during its filling. According to SUJB no personal contamination and no radioactive releases outside of the controlled area were registered.


The State Authority for Nuclear Safety issued a permission, which entitled CEZ to operate both units of the Temelín nuclear power plant. This permission, required by Atomic Energy Act, concluded the two-year trial operation of the power plant. The first unit of the plant was officially allowed to switch from trial to standard operational mode exactly four years after the first launch of the reactor.
The permission was issued altough in September SUJB had announced stricter controls and investigations of the whole plant because of the increasing amount of incidents.


Unit 1 had to be shutdown again for a few days because of leakages in the secondary circuit.


3000 litres of radioactive water contaminated two operating rooms because of a leak in the primary coolant system.


In 2003 according to SUJB 36 events occured which were rated INES 0, and 2 events rated INES 1.


Yesterday new problems in Temelín 2 arised: Because of the breakdown of a circulating pump for cooling water the reactor had to be run down to 38 % for a few hours.
The Temelín 1 reactor had to be run down to 70 % because of a failure of the condensate pump.


Because of another failure of data transmission the turbine and the reactor of Temelín Unit 2 had to be shut down again.


Unit 2 of Temelín had to be shut down because of a false signal announcing a failure of control rods.
A false signal was the reason of shutdowns also in September of this year, when it appeared successively at the first and the second block.


Another leak was discovered during inspection.
Since October 2000 there have been more than 50 technical failures registered.


During inspection a leak was found at the steam line´s measuring device in the secondary reactor at Temelín Unit 2.


Because of a false signal Unit 1 of Temelín had to be shut down The commission confirmed the shutdown was an unusual technological event that did not affect nuclear safety.


Temelin staff will shut unit-1 down for about a month, as planned, to harmonise revisions and fuel replacement in both units so that these would not overlap in the future.
The shutdown is following a series of unplanned shutdowns in the last month, for which temelin was critisized by Czech and Austrian NGOs.


Unit 1 had to be shut down on for the fourth time this year for a fault in the non- nuclear part.


Leakage in the seal of the turbine in the secundary circuit


The Austrian Federal Ministry for Environment has published an interim report concerning safety at Temelin. Main critics are the so-called 28.8 meter platform and the pressure relief valves.


Output of the reactor of the first block of the nuclear power station Temelin was reduced from 100 to 39 per cent on due to problems with pumps, Temelin spokesman Milan Nebesar said.
Temelin's opponents claim the leakage found in the pump shows the hidden technical problems in the power station.


915.220 people have signed the Austrian Anti-Temelín-referendum. It was launched by the FPÖ and has been discussed controversially because of the threat of a veto against the Czech Republic´s planned entry into the EU.


In 2002 according to SUJB 26 events occured which were rated INES 0, and 2 events rated INES 1.


The Temelin nuclear power plant has handed over to the State Authority for Nuclear Safety SUJB all documentation on the power start-up of the first reactor, started in late Oct 2000, and applied for SUJB permission to launch trial operation of the block.

Trial operation will last 18 months which will also be the warranty period. Only after the completion of trial operation will the plant start operating commercially. The permission of the trial operation was given after 31 breakdowns and more than 200 standstill days in the first test operation year.


In 2001 according to SUJB 10 events occured which were rated INES 0, and 2 events rated INES 1.

Czechs had agreed to upgrade their planned approach to the assessment ìn some aspects. Prague has also committed to expand the level of public hearings and consultations. An international commission was also set up yesterday, which includes Czech representatives and Austrian, German and EU observers. This will oversee the EIA process in line with EU law and Aarhus convention clauses on public participation and access to information. Registering continuing popular opposition to Temelin, a coalition of Austrian, German and Czech environmental NGOs meeting in Linz today threatened to boycott the EIA if minimum standards were not complied with. Together with the Austrian Green party they claim that the target of finishing the assessment by early June is completely unrealistic. Meanwhile, not only protests but technical problems continue to trouble the power, the latest of which is the discovery of a cracked steam pipe which has again held up testing of the first 981 megawatt unit. Follow-up: Austrian environment ministry: http://www.bmlf.gv.at, Green party: http://www.gruene.at FOE Austria: http://www.global2000.at

Startup tests atTemelin stopped because of continuous vibrations of the turbine, which requires new backfits and adjustments.


In 2000 according to SUJB 20 events occured which were rated INES 0, and 1 event rated INES 1.

The Czech Republic has agreed that its Temelin nuclear power plant will undergo a full environmental impact assessment (EIA) in line with EU requirements before fully coming on stream. Pressure for the change was exerted by the European Commission after vigorous allegations by neighbours Austria and Germany that the plant did not match western standards. The first of the power station's has been running at test levels since 10 October. Agreement over the EIA was struck last night at a summit between Czech premier Milos Zeman and Austrian chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel. According to an Austrian environment ministry official, the Czech authorities are "voluntarily extending" an ongoing EIA to broaden its scope and enable participation by outside experts. He told ENDS Daily that the revised procedures would be substantially in line with the EU environmental impact directive and would also comply with rules in the UN Espoo convention on EIA in a transboundary. This involves participation by citizens potentially affected, including in neighbouring countries, as well as multilateral consultation at government level. Follow-up: Austrian environment ministry: http://www.bmlf.gv.at, Czech environment ministry http://www.env.cz

With Czech utility CEZ reported ready to start-up the Temelin nuclear power station "within days," Austrian campaigners have launched new protests, blockading all border crossings between the Czech Republic and Austria for most of today.

The Temelin power station is regarded as unsafe by Austrian and German experts, and the Austrian government has threatened to delay the Czech Republic's entry to the EU unless extra safety measures are taken. Austrian opponents of Temelin are calling on the Czechs to undertake a full environmental impact assessment for the plant and to ratify the UN Espoo convention on impact assessment of projects with transboundary implications.


The European Parliament has endorsed Austria's demand that the Czech Republic carry out a full environmental impact assessment (EIA) on the controversial Temelin nuclear power plant before activating it. The call came one day after the plant's owner announced that it would begin producing electricity within a fortnight.
The European Commission supported the aim of the parliament's non-binding resolution, saying: "According to current Czech legislation, an EIA is required before the operating licence is issued. The Commission expects this provision to be enforced by the Czech authorities." Earlier this week, however, Czech officials told the Commission that the plant did not require an EIA because planning permission had been given in 1986, six years before national EIA rules took effect.


Czech plans to start operating the originally Soviet designed Temelin plant have long been criticised by Austria, The Austrian environment ministry renewed calls just last month for a full environmental impact assessment (EIA) to be carried out on Temelin and the government tried last year to prevent a Czech decision to complete the facility .

Without new safety guarantees, the government would withhold its approval for the energy chapter of the Czech Republic's accession agreement with the EU, effectively blocking entry, he warned.

Czech politicians have strongly criticised Austria's new bid to stop Temelin. Though an opponent of the plant himself, Czech president Vaclav Havel said: "EU accession and safety questions should be dealt with separately. There are no EU regulations that prohibit EU membership if a country has nuclear power plants


Start of fueling the core at Temelin-1.Testing is planned to begin in September 2000.

At a press conference Greenpeace expressed deep dissatisfaction about the level of nuclear safety at the Temelin NPP. Greenpeace turned to the Czech government and the State Office for Nuclear Safety, asking them to make publicly accessible all information on Temelin's construction related to citizens' health and safety. The materials available to us point to serious infractions of safety culture at Temelin. In their efforts to meet the completion deadline, the Temelin management is turning to provisory solutions that threaten the reactor's safe operation, stated Jan Haverkamp of Greenpeace, adding that the information that Greenpeace has given news reporters is probably only the tip of the iceberg. Greenpeace identified primarily the following flaws: - Aiming to fulfill and shorten the planned construction period for the Temelin NPP, provisory procedures were used that cannot ensure the optimal safety of the plant; - In the case of certain unsatisfactory test results, standard testing procedures were exchanged for non-standard by modifying documentation; - In at least one case, a regular test was cancelled; - Despite the fact that the (probably positive) final evaluation of the non-active tests had already been handed to SUJB as the basis for issuing a fuel loading permit, not all systems essential for safe operation of the reactor are functional yet. The 1st block's containment sprinkler system (SAOZ) is activated only in the case of a serious accident, and it must be 100% effective. This system could not however be fully tested according to the approved program, because the water would have damaged the electronic equipment that was already mounted on the reactor vessel at the time of testing. To judge the seriousness of the documents that Greenpeace has obtained, it would be necessary to examine the relevant parts of the final evaluation report that CEZ sent to the State Nuclear Safety Office (SUJB). SUJB however had to refuse to let Greenpeace examine these, because all pages (!) of this report have been declared a trade secret. The materials available to Greenpeace show that the human risk factor (underestimating the danger of an accident and violation of the principles behind a nuclear safety culture) play a key role in the matter of Temelin's safety. Follow up: WWW: http://www.greenpeace.cz

Despite various construction problems at Temelin, the management of CEZ tries to finalize the work soon. Czech and international NGOs use all possibilities to prevent the commission of the plant.

A possibility is seen in the EIA procedures on construction changes. The EIA process regarding the auxiliary building for the radwaste treatment, is running since february. Another 78 changes will be subject of further EIA processes.

Moreover, 100 Czech NGOs have formed a platform fiting for a referendum, which should be held before the plant gets a license for operation. leader of the coalition "referendum 2000" is Hnuti Duha. In the short term of one month they have collected 40 000 signatures, including prominent artists as well as the achbishop of Olomuoc.

In Mai the coalition got support from the Czech minister for environment M. Kuzvart, as he criticized that the public has got not enough information about the Temelin NPP and regretted that the Czech government had not carried out a referendum.


The contract amendment between utility CEZ a.s. and general supplier Skoda Praha confirms a budget for completing the two VVER-1000s of 98.6-billion Czech crowns (about U.S. $3-billion). It foresees fuel loading of Temelin-1 in late August 2000, commercial operation nine months later, and unit 2 following in 15 months.
Since CEZ decided in 1993, with the government's blessing, to complete the units with a core and digital instrumentation and control (I&C) by Westinghouse, the project's budget has risen 43% and the schedule slipped by five years.
The major difficulty over the past two years has been integration of the western I&C system into buildings designed for Soviet-era instrumentation with less stringent standards for cable separation and segregation.
Skoda Praha CEO Stanislav Svoboda said the schedule remains vulnerable since I&C design is still not complete. He said that only once Westinghouse has finished its work will the Czechs know whether they made the right decision in opting for the cost-plus-fee approach instead of agreeing to the additional $175-million Westinghouse was asking.
CEZ and Skoda also agreed to establish a joint reserve fund, initially Czk 1.5-billion, for contingencies, similar to an arrangement Skoda has with Slovenske Elektrarne (SE) for the Mochovce completion. It will be used, Svoloda said, to "react quickly to the need for repairs" at the VVERs if original suppliers can no longer help.
Meanwhile, cable pulling and installation of Westinghouse equipment at Temelin is "going well", the Skoda CEO said.


The main protagonists of the Temelin completion - CEZ, main contractor Skoda Praha, and Westinghouse Electric Co. - agreed to target commercial operation of the first of the two VVER-1000 units in May 2001, five years behind schedule, at a cost of 98.6-billion crowns, 43% more than originally planned.
The government said that before a final decision about Temelin is taken, it is necessary to prepare an evaluation of the project by a team of independent experts, including foreign participants.
The ministers of industry and environment are to submit a joint proposal for the evaluation process by July 28.


Czech utility CEZ last week confirmed that its latest estimate for finishing the two VVER-1000s at Temelin is 98,6-billion crowns, and that the commercial operation of unit 1 could come as late as July 2001.
Late last month it was revealed that the, CEZ estimate, which is 35% higher than projected five years ago when the plan to finish Temelin was approved.
Officials said the company will have spent CZK 63,3-billion of the total by the end of June, leaving another CZK 35,3-billion to be invested.
The company also said it expects to load fuel in Temelin-1 in late August 2000 and start commercial operation in May 2001, with an uncertainty of two months. That represents a 4,5-year delay from 1993 targets.
Opponents of the Temelin Project saw "strong potential" for further cost and schedule overruns, notably because CEZ has not finalized key contracts with main contractor Skoda Praha and instrumentation & control supplier Westinghouse.
CEZ will produce electricity at $30 per megawatt-hour, lower than any other potential new source of power.CEZ believed it would cost an estimated CZK 26,5-billion to return the site to greenfield status if Temelin were abandoned.


Czech utility CEZ estimates it will take 98,5-billion crowns (U.S. $3-billion at current rates) to finish the Temelin NPP.
At an April 30 press conference, Minister Kuehnl said the project would probably still go ahead, because the cost of not finishing the two VVER-1000 units would likely be almost the same as completing them.
If Temelin were abandoned, he argued, the government would have to decide what to do with the Ckr 60-billion already spent " and would face high costs from cancellation. " We wouldn´t have the electricity and then we will be paying for the same thing twice," said Kuehnl.
Fuel load at Temelin-1 is now expected in May 2000.
The Ckr 98,5-billion figure and the 2001 startup are beyond the limits for profitability of the project.
When the post-Communist government decided in 1993 to finish the Soviet-design plant using new fuel and a new digital I&C system from Westinghouse, Temelin-1 was expected to be on line in 1995 and cost Ckr 68-billion. In recent years, however, the project has been plagued in particular with conflicts between safety requirements connected with the Westinghouse supply and the cabling layout of the original VVER reactor building design.


Westinghouse has reached the half-way point in developing. building and installing a modern I&C system for the two Temelin units. Westinghouse was awarded the contract by Temelins's owner CEZ 3 years ago. Westinghouse said that it has kept to the original schedule set by CEZ to have the I&C system installed and tested by the time unit 1 was expected to start up in November 1996. about 50% of the work is done, the basic system software has been designed.
CEZ has been paying Westinghouse on time within 30 day's billing periods for the I&C word, out of current revenue. (It is anticipated that the project loan granted by the US Exim Bank to cover 85% of the costs of the I&C effort.
Westinghouse now has about a dozen employees involved in the project at Temelin and 250 at Pittsburg headquarters. During testing the I&C system vendor's site staff will increase to 35.


Temelin manager told at an IAEA meeting that civil work of unit 1 is virtually complete and its technical work 80-85% finished. Unit-2 remains about 18 month behind ( target startup of unit-1 is now in mid-1997).
Work on unit-1 can't go further until Czech regulators approve the design changes developed by CEZ & Westinghouse to upgrade the plant to western standards.. The new FSAR incorporates Westinghouse's new core and fuel desing and adds severe accident analyses and changes in the ECCS.