Major flaw in largest nuclear reactor: too much carbon

LONDON, 13 April, 2015 ? The future of the world’s biggest nuclear reactor, under construction at Flamanville in northern France, is now in doubt after a serious flaw was found in its steel pressure vessel.

Examination has shown that the steel contains too much carbon, which can weaken the vessel’s structure and breaches safety rules. The Chinese, who have two similar 1,600 megawatt European Pressurised Reactors under construction, have been warned that they too may share the potentially catastrophic problem.

The news from the Climate News Network suggests this may have serious repercussions for the new proposed nuclear reactors in the UK (already notorious for the huge subsidy provided) and for the future of Areva, the french engineering firm constructing the reactor.