The gradual return of Belgian nuclear reactors to the network continues. The Federal Agency for Nuclear Control (FANC) has given this December 24 its approval to restart Tihange 3. The civil works needed to restart the unit are completed. The return of the plant on the network is estimated on January 7, instead of March 2 as initially planned.

The FANC approved Electrabel's methodology for civil works in the non-nuclear part of Tihange 3. This methodology consisted in immediately carrying out the concrete work necessary to meet the safety requirements and to phase out the full renewal of non-critical concrete later.
Electrabel confirms that thanks to the strong human and technical mobilization, the first phase of the work is now completed and the results of the control tests are positive. As a result, Electrabel is now launching operations to restart the unit safely on January 7.
During the next planned outage, and even if safety margins are currently sufficient, the teams will proceed with the installation of a new roof slab. The teams will also begin the uncritical repair of the walls.
With the return of Tihange 3, Doel 3, Tihange 1 and Doel 4 (December 31 according to current assessment), 4000 MW of local nuclear capacity will again be on the network for the winter, in line with  Electrabel’s commitments.

In addition, Electrabel's teams have deployed exceptional measures since September, which has resulted in 1273 megawatts of additional local capacity.
These measures are:

  • The restart of the gas station Vilvoorde stopped since 2014 following an agreement with the owner EMGB (+ 255 megawatts)
  • Maximizing the efficiency of the thermal park (+100 megawatts)
  • The installation of complementary mobile units on different sites (+ 418 megawatts)
  • Demand Management for Industrial Customers (500 megawatts)
ENGIE Group's thermal and hydraulic power stations in France, the Netherlands and Germany have also been activated. Operator of a diversified production park and first green energy producer in the country, Electrabel places the safety of its nuclear fleet, its teams and the environment as top priority. Electrabel invests heavily (200 million euros per year) in the maintenance and continuous improvement of the performance of its production fleet.
Depending on the available elements, Electrabel, a responsible company, communicates transparently to the market but also to its customers, particularly via the website www.engie.be/hiver.

Press contact:
Anne-Sophie Hugé (FR)  
+ 32 2 518 60 20               
anne-sophie.huge@engie.com