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Krümmel Nuclear Power Plant

Krümmel Nuclear Power Plant

History of Krümmel Nuclear Power Plant

Krümmel Nuclear Power Plant is located in Geesthacht, 30 km from Hamburg in Germany. Construction began in 1974 and the plant was taken into operation in 1984. The ownership is divided between Vattenfall (50%) and E.ON (50%), and Vattenfall is responsible for operating the facility. Vattenfall has shareholdings in the three nuclear power plants at Brunsbüttel, Krümmel and Brokdorf*.

German phase out law

In December 2010 the German Government had decided to extend the life time of all German nuclear power plants by an average of 12 years. However, after the nuclear accident in Fukushima this decision was reversed. As a first reaction, the German Government imposed a moratorium until June 2011. During this time, the seven oldest nuclear power plants plus Krümmel had to stay off the grid. In August 2011 the 13th amendment of the Nuclear Power Act came into effect, which underlined the political will to phase out of nuclear power in Germany. As a result, eight of the 17 nuclear power plants (including Krümmel and Brunsbüttel) were closed down immediately and the remaining nine plants will be stepwise phased out by the end of 2022. 

Characteristics of Krümmel Nuclear Power Plant

The power plant has an electrical capacity of 1,346 MW and is equipped with a boiling water reactor (BWR) manufactured by Kraftwerk Union.

NPP Krümmel has from the commissioning in September 1983 until the termination of its operating permit in August 2011 generated a net electric power of 201,712,092.40 MWh.

The core of the Krümmel Nuclear Power Plant reactor consists of 840 fuel elements that contain the nuclear fuel uranium. Uranium atoms undergo fission to produce the heat required to boil water. Heat is produced by nuclear fission in the reactor core and this causes the cooling water to boil, producing steam. The steam is directly used to drive a turbine that in turn drives an electric generator, after which the water is cooled in a condenser and converted back to liquid water.

The cooling water used in the turbine condenser of the plant is sourced from the River Elbe, which is close by the plant.

*Vattenfall is a minority shareholder of the Brokdorf power plant with 20% of the shares.