Lithuania's Ignalina nuclear plant shut down after emergency system triggered

Thursday, November 15, 2007

VILNIUS, Lithuania (Thomson Financial) - Lithuania's Soviet-era Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP) said its number two unit was shut down yesterday at 5.20 pm after a technical problem triggered the automatic protection system.

The plant, which uses the same reactors as Ukraine's Chernobyl plant, will remain offline for at least three days.

'The situation on the site and outside the Ignalina NPP is normal, the radiation situation has not changed and nobody suffered,' the utility said in a statement.

'According to the preliminary information the Unit 2 will start the operation three days after it has been shut.'

INPP decommissioned its first power unit in 2004 and it is scheduled to shut down the second unit in 2009.

However, the Baltic Times reported that Lithuania wants to keep running the 1300 MW facility after 2009 in order to continue generating electricity while it builds a new nuclear power plant.

Copyright Thomson Financial News Limited 2007. All rights reserved.
AFX News Limited, 11.09.07, 4:25 AM ET

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Alexandra Prokopenko (not verified) Says:
Fri, 2007-11-16 21:06

Lithuania cannot just shut down Ignalina as the EU officials would like it to be - a country like that having almost no other source of power should have some source of electricity on its own. By the way, Chernobyl-type of reactor is quite safe and reliable if loaded and run correctly. Several disfunctions may happen even at the most advanced and modern power plant.
New Ignalina-2 will be a project of 4 countries - Lithuania, Poland, Latvia and Estonia, and is to be launched into commercial operation about year 2015, not earlier - such construction requires time and a lot of financial efforts from all sides.