Incident at EDF’s Tricastin nuclear power plant (Reactor No. 2)
ASN were notified by EDF that during the fuel discharge operations performed on the night of 5 and 6 November on reactor No. 2 of the Tricastin nuclear power plant, a fuel assembly got caught on the upper internal structures during discharge operations.
Diagram of the incident at the Tricastin EDF nuclear power plant Diagram of the incident at the Tricastin EDF nuclear power plant
The Lyon division of ASN sent two inspectors to the Tricastin nuclear power plant on Friday 6 November. The steps taken by EDF, in accordance with reactor operating rules, were analysed by the ASN and investigations were carried out to determine the causes of this incident. The operator evacuated and isolated the reactor building. The assembly is underwater in the vessel and is cooled in accordance with normal reactor shutdown procedures.
In accordance with its procedures, the ASN will publish a follow-up letter to this inspection on its website.
The incident had no consequences for power plant personnel and did not result in any leaks into the environment.
EDF suggested that ASN classify this incident as level 1 on the INES scale.
The core of the nuclear reactor is made up of 157 fuel assemblies each comprising 264 rods which contain the nuclear fuel. The reactors must be shut down periodically and discharged so that fuel can be renewed.
A similar event happened at the same reactor in September 2008 and at reactor No. 1 of the Gravelines nuclear power plant in August 2009.