The Swiss canton of Aargau has launched a consultation on its structural masterplan in preparation for a possible new reactor at the Beznau nuclear power station. Meanwhile, operators of the existing reactors are to benefit from a simulator upgrade.
|How Beznau could look with a new reactor and low-profile cooling tower
Framework permit applications for possible new nuclear units to replace aging reactors at Beznau and Mühleberg were filed by Axpo Group and BKW FMB Energy at the end of 2008, triggering a review process involving consultations from the cantonal to the international level, Federal Council and parliamentary votes, and an optional referendum.
Now the canton of Aargau, home to Beznau, has decided to launch a consultation on its structural plan in advance of the 2011 cantonal consultation on the general licence application.
According to the cantonal website, the consultation process to adapt the canton's structural plan to accommodate the new power plant will be formally launched on 15 March, but public documents detailing the plan have already been posted on the website of the canton's Department of Construction, Transport and Environment (BVU).
Simulator update for Beznau
Operators at Beznau, home to two of the world's oldest pressurized water reactors (PWRs), are to benefit from state-of-the-art reactor simulation facilities as US-based L3-MAPPS carries out a major upgrade at the plant.
The contract announced in January will see the full scope simulator for the two 380 MWe Westinghouse PWRs updated with the most recent version of L3-MAPPS' Orchid simulation products. This will involve improvements to the simulator's computer hardware and software, including simulation software and maintenance tools. The current simulator was put into service by L3-MAPPS in 2007. Upgrading is planned for completion by autumn 2010.
Simulators are used both to train nuclear power plant operators and to enable them to hone their skills, making for both improved operating efficiency and safer operations.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News