Continued operation of the 900 MWe reactors beyond 40 years: ASN consults the public concerning its draft resolution
On 3 December, ASN will open a public consultation on its website concerning the conditions for the continued operation of the 900 MWe reactors beyond their fourth periodic safety review. This consultation, which will run until 15 January 2021*, concerns the draft resolution that ASN envisages issuing following its examination of the generic phase of the fourth periodic safety review of these reactors. This phase concerns the studies and modifications common to all the reactors, which were designed in accordance with a similar model.
In its draft resolution, ASN orders the implementation of the major safety improvements planned by EDF as well as additional measures it considers to be necessary in order to achieve the objectives of the periodic safety review.
ASN considers that all the provisions planned by EDF and those that it itself orders, open up the prospect of continued operation of the 900 MWe reactors for ten years following their fourth periodic safety review. The periodic safety review will then be performed on each 900 MWe reactor, with the process running until 2031.
Implementation on each reactor will include specific on-site inspections and will take account of the particularities of each installation. The provisions planned by EDF for each reactor will be the subject of a public inquiry.
In France, the authorisation to create a nuclear installation is issued by the Government, further to an ASN opinion. This authorisation is issued with no time limit and an in-depth review of the installation, called the “periodic safety review” is carried out every ten years to assess the conditions for its continued operation for a further ten years.
EDF’s thirty-two 900 MWe reactors are the oldest ones in operation in France. Their fourth periodic safety review is of particular significance, because their design was based on the assumption of an operating lifetime of 40 years. Extending their operation beyond this period means that these design studies must be updated or some equipment replaced.
all documents in french only
Public debate page - from September 2018 untill march 2019: https://concertation.suretenucleaire.fr/
* Public consultation is extended until January 22, 2021 [update of 01/14/2021]