Major investment at power station


Around 500 extra workers are being drafted in to help carry out a £30 million pound maintenance programme at Dungeness B Power Station.

And power station operators EDF believe it will provide a boost for the local economy.

One of the two nuclear reactors at Dungeness B will be taken out of service on May 1 for the work to be carried out. Dungeness B’s other reactor is due to continue operating normally throughout the period.

The new workers will join the site’s 550-strong team during the ten-week period.

Steve Coates, plant manager at Dungeness B, said: “The team here at Dungeness B is ready for what will be a busy time for the station and they will be supported by many hundreds of contractors.

“It’s good news for the local economy which will see benefits for local shops, taxis, restaurants, B and Bs and hotels.”

These maintenance periods known as “statutory outages” take place every three years and are planned years in advance. The company also advises National Grid to ensure that there is no impact on the national electricity supply.

The team will carry out more than 11,000 separate pieces of work. The extensive programme of work will see inspections inside the reactor as well as the installation of new equipment at the plant.

This year the station is also investing an additional £4.5 million in key projects to improve plant performance through to the end of its life. As announced in January 2015, Dungeness B will now remain open for an additional ten years until 2028 as a result of £150m extra investment.

Together, the two reactors generate enough low carbon electricity to power around one and a half million homes. In a typical year, producing this amount of low carbon energy avoids 3.4 million tonnes of CO2 being produced which is the same as taking 1.5 million (5%) passenger cars off the UK’s roads.

Dungeness B nuclear power station was constructed between 1965-1985 and was the first commercial AGR to be commissioned in the UK.

Advanced Gas-Cooled Reactors are the second generation of British gas-cooled reactors. They use graphite as a moderator and are cooled primarily with carbon dioxide. Nuclear generation does not however emit any CO2.