Ohma 1 Start Up Delayed Another Two Years

The primary contractor for the world's first plutonium-uranium mixed oxide fuel (MOX) reactor for commercial purposes said Wednesday that it expected a further delay of two years before the facility's first reactor, Ohma Unit 1, would be up and running.

Ohma NPPThe company, which sited the lengthy regulatory process for previous delays, said that additional reviews concerning the plant itself are expected to add two more years to the project. “Although items are examined in parallel and there has been some progress, it is expected that it will take a reasonable amount of time in the future and based on the fact that the plant related examination will follow, we will have to expect about two more years,” said the contractor, the Electric Power Development Company, known as J-Power.

Ohma 1 was about 40 percent completed when the Great East Japan Earthquake struck in March 2011 – the earthquake that created the massive tsunami event that knocked out backup power at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Generating Station. The subsequent three-unit meltdown at the plant also contributed to the delays in completing Ohma 1.

In September 2015, the company sited the lengthy review and delays in getting equipment constructed as another reason to announce a delay. The original start up date for the reactor was expected to be sometime in 2021. A year later, another two-year delay was announced, according to the World Nuclear Association.

This week, the company said completion safety upgrades prompted by the post-Fukushima accident regulations would be finished in the second half of 2025. It said the start of operations for the first reactor at the plant was “unknown.”

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