Unit 1 of the Koeberg nuclear station will be taken offline for a planned refuelling outage, Eskom said on Monday.
“Unit 1 of the Koeberg nuclear station will be taken offline for a planned refuelling outage after a safe record-setting continuous run of 474 days.
“The refuelling outage takes just over a month and the unit is expected back online towards the end of October 2016.
Koeberg Unit 1 has been on stream without any interruption since its statutory three-month refuelling outage in February 2015,” said the power utility.
Koeberg Unit 2 is currently operating optimally and is contributing 930MW to the national grid.
Every 15 to 18 months, each of the two units at Koeberg, which is located in the Western Cape, is shut down for refuelling, inspection and maintenance.
The routine maintenance is part of Eskom’s overall maintenance programme for its fleet of generation units.
Eskom schedules outages to avoid having both units out of service at the same time and to avoid the winter months in each year.
During these routine outages, one third of the used nuclear fuel is replaced with new fuel.
“We are implementing our maintenance plan to increase the reliability of our plant, which will in turn increase our operating reserves and stabilise the grid.
It is largely due to this rigorous plant maintenance programme that we have had a stable supply of electricity for over a year now,” said Eskom.