Fennovoima has selected three reactor designs to be considered in its application for a decision-in-principle for its planned nuclear power plant in Finland.
In January, Fennovoima submitted an environmental impact assessment (EIA) program to the Finnish Ministry of Employment and the Economy regarding the construction of a new nuclear power plant in the country. The plant alternatives under review involve the construction of either one unit with a production capacity of 1500-1800 MWe, or two units each with a capacity of 1000-1250 MWe.
The company has now revealed that it has selected three reactor designs for consideration. These are two Areva designs - the European Pressurized Water Reactor (EPR) and the SWR-1000 boiling water reactor (BWR) - and Toshiba's version of the Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (ABWR). The EPR has a capacity of some 1700 MWe, the SWR-1000 a capacity of about 1250 MWe, and the ABWR some 1600 MWe.
Fennovoima said that it would use the Hamaoka 5 reactor in Japan as the reference plant for the ABWR; the reactor currently under construction at Olkiluoto, Finland, as the reference for the EPR; and Germany's Gundremmingen C as the reference for the SWR-1000.
Fennovoima said that feasibility studies will be conducted based on the reactor vendors' basic designs, which will be compared to Finnish safety requirements and the Fennovoima's requirements. The feasibility studies should be completed in late 2008.
In the decision-in-principle application, Fennovoima will present to the Finnish radiation and safety authority, Stuk, all plant-related information required by Finnish rules. Stuk will then review the designs and prepare a preliminary safety assessment on each. The Ministry of Economy and Employment will subsequently prepare the decision-in-principle based on Stuk's findings and statements from all other stakeholders. The government and parliament are scheduled to make the decision in the first half of 2010.
Tapio Saarenpää, Fennovoima's CEO, said: "We are proud to present these first-class alternatives for consideration in Finland. It is our goal to have available reactor designs that reliably serve the full range of our shareholders' electric power needs, while comfortably meeting the most stringent safety requirements in the world."
In a statement, Fennovoima said that "ultimate plant design choice will be made after the decision-in-principle by the Finnish government and parliament." The company expects to start constructing the plant around 2012, with commercial operation by 2018 to 2020.
The possible locations of the new plant are Norrskogen and Kilgrundet in Kristinestad, Hanhikivi in Pyhäjoki, Kampuslandet and Gäddbergsö in Ruotsinpyhtää and Karsikko and Laitakari in Simo.