The No. 2 reactor at the Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s Wanli District (萬里) experienced a malfunction that triggered an automatic shutdown early yesterday morning, Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電) said.
The exact cause of the incident is still being investigated, but there is no risk of a radiation leak, the state-run utility said.
“While we are still investigating the exact cause, the automatic shutdown was safely executed and there is no danger from radiation,” Taipower spokesman Chang Ting-shu (張廷舒) said.
The malfunction occurred at 6:33am, triggering an emergency shutdown, taking 985 megawatts of power offline, Chang said.
The control rods have now been fully lowered into the reactor and Taipower would apply with the Atomic Energy Council for the unit to be restarted as soon as the malfunction is resolved, he said.
However, it would take three days before the reactor reaches maximum output, Taipower said.
“The malfunction took place early in the morning during low power demand and it was possible for us to dispatch our reserve capacity immediately, leading to no loss of power [to the grid],” Chang said. “With the nation’s hydropower system full after the recent rains, we should be able to cope while the Guosheng Nuclear Power Plant’s No. 2 reactor remains offline.”
The operating reserve ratio is expected to remain “green,” or above 10 percent, in the coming days, but might dip into “yellow” territory, or 6 to 10 percent, during nighttime peak periods before the reactor is restarted, Taipower said.
As the mercury spiked close to 38°C, the nation’s electricity consumption reached 38.84 gigawatts (GW) at 1:50pm yesterday, with an operating reserve ratio of 10.17 percent, the company said.
The No. 1 reactor at the Guosheng power plant went offline on July 1 after the facility ran out of space to store spent nuclear fuel.
The No. 2 reactor is expected to keep generating power until March 2023, when its operating permit expires, Taipower said.
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