Germany's 1.4 GW Grohnde reactor has now generated over 350 TWh of electricity during its 32 years in operation, more than any other single nuclear power generation block around the world, but in the future will play an increasing role in providing grid stability rather than providing only baseload power, plant operator E.ON Kernkraft said in a statement.
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"While the plant was used exclusively in baseload [around the clock operation] in the past, it is now used up to 600 hours each month to regulate load," E.ON said, adding that it has increased fourfold the capability of the reactor to ramp up or down to now 40 MW per minute.
The reduced baseload operation of the reactor is also apparent in the 2015 output statistic, which remained below 10 TWh despite an availability of 92.4%, E.ON said.
The reactor in Northern Germany was commissioned in 1984 and achieved an average annual output of just below 11 TWh over its current 32-year operating life so far, of which eight years saw the reactor topping the global annual output table, the operator said.
The Grohnde reactor is scheduled to be switched off by the end of 2021 under Germany's nuclear phase-out timetable.