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Federal Agency for Nuclear Control approves safe restart of Doel 3 and Tihange 2 Electrabel initiates preparation work to restart both units

May 17, 2013

The Federal Agency for Nuclear Control has announced its decision that the Doel 3 and Tihange 2 reactors can restart safely.

Following the discovery last summer of hydrogen flakes in the material of the Doel 3 and Tihange 2 reactor vessels, Electrabel carried out an extremely profound series of tests and analyses. The company called upon an interdisciplinary team of internal experts, experts from Laborelec and Tractebel Engineering, and external national and international experts, including SCK-CEN and academics.

The results of these tests were submitted to the Agency on 15 April this year for Tihange 2 and on 26 April for Doel 3. These complete the findings already submitted on 5 December 2012 and confirm their conclusions: the indications that were found are hydrogen flakes. These arose during the forging stage of the vessels and are stable. The structural integrity and load bearing capacity of the vessels are not affected and meet all the safety criteria.

Following the decision of the Federal Agency of Nuclear Control, Electrabel will immediately initiate preparation work to restart both units. These preparations will take two to three weeks and will be closely monitored by the control authorities.

Electrabel will have specific attention to maintain the highest safety level for its operations.

It has been decided to carry out a new inspection of the Doel 3 and Tihange 2 reactor vessels, same to the one in the summer of 2012, at the end of the first fuel cycle.

Geetha Keyaert (nl) +32 2 518 65 04
Anne-Sophie Hugé (fr) +32 2 518 60 20

GDF SUEZ develops its businesses (electricity, natural gas, services) around a model based on responsible growth to take up today’s major energy and environmental challenges: meeting energy needs, ensuring the security of supply, fighting against climate change and maximizing the use of resources. The Group provides highly efficient and innovative solutions to individuals, cities and businesses by relying on diversified gas-supply sources, flexible and low-emission power generation as well as unique expertise in four key sectors: liquefied natural gas, energy efficiency services, independent power production and environmental services. GDF SUEZ employs 219,300 people worldwide and achieved revenues of €97 billion in 2012. The Group is listed on the Paris, Brussels and Luxembourg stock exchanges and is represented in the main international indices: CAC 40, BEL 20, DJ Euro Stoxx 50, Euronext 100, FTSE Eurotop 100, MSCI Europe, ASPI Eurozone, Vigeo World 120, Vigeo Europe 120 and Vigeo France 20.

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