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Nuclear agency approves Hanbit 1 reactor restart after maintenance

All Headlines 16:13 May 09, 2019

SEOUL, May 9 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's nuclear safety commission said Thursday that it has approved restarting the Hanbit 1 reactor after the completion of maintenance inspections.

The 950-megawatt pressurized water reactor that started commercial power generation in 1986 has been offline since Aug. 18, 2018.

"After checking 86 items it has been determined that the reactor can begin safe operations," the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission said.

It said the operators of the reactor in Yeonggwang, 320 kilometers south of Seoul, have started the process of getting the reactor up to "criticality" level.

Criticality refers to the normal operating condition of a reactor, in which nuclear fuel sustains a fission chain reaction.

South Korea currently operates 24 reactors, generating about 30 percent of its electricity. Asia's fourth-largest economy has been rolling out a phaseout plan that aims to wean it off nuclear power and nudge it toward renewable energy sources.

Nuclear agency approves Hanbit 1 reactor restart after maintenance - 1

yonngong@yna.co.kr
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