Magpie Country Nukes Headliner

       nuclear issues news brief from Japan


30 May 2000

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) said that Unit 6 reactor (ABWR,
1,356MW, Toshiba/GE/Hitachi) of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power
Station had been manually shut down on Monday 29 May. Abnormally
high concentration of iodine was detected in the primary coolant.
Also the rare gas radiation monitor s in the compressor exhaust
system showed elevated figures since the day before. Pin holes in
the fuel rods are suspect.

TEPCO claims no release of radioactivity into atmosphere.

The commercial power station, which is the world's largest nuke
power complex with 7 reactors of 8,212MW total electricity output,
is located across the border of Kashiwazaki Town and Kariwa Village
in Niigata Prefecture in mid-north Japan, on the coast of the Sea of

The Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Unit 6 (or KK-6 in short) has a record of
repeated reactor trips, either automatic or manual, since it went
critical in December 1995. The failures include the mulfunction of
an internal recirculation pump in February 1996, iodine leak from
the pin-holes in a fuel rod assembly in August 1996, the turbine
breakdown due to a thunder hit in August 1998, and the generator
breakdown in May 1999.

KK-6 had a very similar failure in August 1999, but the operators
have been unable to identify what caused the abnormal concentration
of radioactivity in the coolant system.

news sources: Niigata Nippoh newspaper 29 May 2000, and personal
info from Mr Kaneko Sadao, local activist in Maki, Niigata.

You can read the Reuter and AP stories of the KK-6 incident
respectively at the following:



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