Experts knew about the cracks in the reactor vessel NPP Dul 30 years ago

Professionals were aware of the cracks in the building of the third reactor Belgian NPP "Dul" in East Flanders, more than 30 years ago, when he had not yet been put into operation, said on Thursday the local media.

As reported earlier the head of the Federal Agency for Nuclear Safety Belgium (AFCN) Willy De Ruwer, the bottom of the "NPP" Dul-3 ", the experts found about eight thousand cracks in two centimeters each.

The reactor was shut down in June of this year, but the general public became aware of it only on August 8. The cracks in the housing NPP "Dul-3" were clear through an ultrasound.

Fifth January 1980 the Flemish newspaper De Morgen published an article which reported the presence of small cracks in the reactor vessel, which recognized, in particular, speaking in the Senate, the then Minister for Labour Roger de Wolfe.

However, the director AFCN, for his part, said that he could not recall it. "It is strange, since the late 1970s, he (de Ruwer) supervised the construction and commissioning of the" Dul-3 "for Electrabel (operator of nuclear power plants)," — said De Morgen.

Currently, the "Dul-3" conducted tests, the results of which AFCN present by the end of October, and only then will decide on the possibility of restarting the rector.

As previously reported, AFCN gave an indication to stop the second reactor Belgian NPP "Tihange" in the Belgian Walloon Region. He became the second reactor, temporarily decommissioned. AFCN required shutdown as a precaution. Agency experts assert that the threat to the population and the environment do not.

Ultrasound examination of the case "Tihange-2" to identify possible cracks begin September 10 and will last for about five weeks. If no problem is found, the decision to restart the reactor can be made in mid-October.

AFCN held August 16 in Brussels, an international meeting of nuclear experts to inform them of the problems encountered with "Dul-3" and "Tihange-2." The meeting was attended by representatives of national nuclear regulators in Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Spain, Switzerland, the U.S. and Argentina. In all these countries the Dutch company Rotterdam Drydocks (had ceased its activity) supplied housing for reactors, similar to those that were set in the 70's of last century, the NPP "Dul" and "Tihange."

In 2011, the nuclear power plant in Belgium, a total of 14 incidents. Eleven of them were classified as incidents of the first level (technical incidents without consequences), two more — the second level (the incident with a significant breach of security) on international seven-point scale of nuclear incidents INES.

The current government of Belgium earlier confirmed that all nuclear power plants in the country will be gradually closed in 2025. The process of shutting down the reactor to be launched in 2015.

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