The operator of Japan’s only activated nuclear power plant says it will delay ramping up power output due to reactor equipment trouble.
Kyushu Electric Power Company says an alarm went off on Thursday afternoon indicating trouble with a condenser at the No. 1 reactor of the Sendai power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture. The condenser turns steam from the power turbine back into water. Neither the steam nor the water is radioactive.
The utility says water in one of the reactor’s 3 condensers had higher than normal salt concentrations.
Kyushu Electric officials say a small amount of seawater that is used for cooling steam appears to have entered the condenser, possibly through holes in the intake pipes.
They say the salt is being removed while one system within the condenser is halted for inspections. A condenser has 2 systems.
Kyushu Electric says the other condensers are working normally, and that power generation and transmission will continue.
The utility was due to raise power output from 75 percent to 95 percent on Friday, before achieving full capacity on August 25th. It now expects a delay of about one week.
The operator restarted the reactor on August 11th at the Sendai nuclear power plant.
It was the first reactor to go back online under new regulations introduced after the Fukushima nuclear accident in 2011.