POWER UTILITY | Staff Reporter, Japan

Kansai Electric's Ohi-3 reactor finally resumes commercial operations

This is the sixth unit to be restarted since the Fukushima disaster.

The third unit of Kansai Electric's Ohi nuclear power plant in the Fukui prefecture of Japan has resumed commercial operation. The reactor restarted in March 2018, two months later than expected, due to safety checks on parts made by Kobe Steel. This is the sixth Japanese nuclear unit to be restarted after clearing the country's revised safety regulations since the Fukushima disaster in 2011.

The 1,127 MW pressurized water reactor (PWR), along with similar Ohi-4 reactor, were shut down in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. The two units were given permission to restart in August 2012 but were taken offline again by the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) in September 2013. Kansai Electric submitted its restart plan in September 2013 and the NRA approved it in August 2017. In November 2017, the power utility secured the approval from the Fukui Prefecture to restart Ohi-3 and Ohi-4 units.

In December 2017, Kansai Electric decided to decommission two reactors at its Ohi nuclear power, citing technical problems to meet new safety standards rather than related costs. Ohi-1 and 2, rated 1,175 MW each, were put into service in 1979 and nearing their standard operating life of 40 years. Both had been offline since the Fukushima disaster in March 2011 and they were removed from the list of commercial reactors on 1 March 2018.

This article was originally published by Enerdata.

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