Olkiluoto 3 is coming – we are ready

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The Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power plant unit begins to contribute to Finland’s electricity generation. What does the commissioning of the new nuclear power plant mean for the security and self-sufficiency of the power system? Minna Laasonen, Senior Expert at Fingrid, answers our questions.

1. How has Fingrid prepared for regular electricity generation at the new plant?

Fingrid has been active in preparing for this moment over several years. Our personnel possess specialist expertise in the operation of the main grid, and this will also see us through the start-up of the new nuclear power plant.

2. How will the electricity generation capacity of Olkiluoto 3 be reflected in the main grid?

It will be particularly evident in the form of an increase in Finnish electricity generation and better self-sufficiency, so it may also affect the need for electricity imports. However, OL3 will also slightly decrease the electricity import capacity from Sweden.

3. What contingencies are in place if OL3 is suddenly unable to supply electricity to the main grid?

Fingrid has worked with the plant’s owner and builder, Teollisuuden Voima, to implement system protection that limits OL3’s impact on the grid in the event of a sudden fault. Furthermore, the Nordic transmission system operators maintain reserves in case of such failures.

4. Will Finland be more vulnerable with respect to electricity in the future? Is it not true that the impacts of a potential disturbance are greater than for smaller units?

Fingrid has contingencies in place if OL3 suffers a disturbance and trips off the grid, so it will not make us vulnerable, even though the effects on the grid are larger than in the event of a failure in a small power plant. In addition, Finnish nuclear power plants generally have excellent reliability rates.

5. Will Olkiluoto 3 make Finland more self-sufficient in terms of electricity?

Yes, Finland will be more self-sufficient in the future. Electricity will be imported if it is cheaper in the neighbouring region. So far, the market has functioned, and Finland has also obtained electricity during its winter peaks. If the winter proved just as cold in our neighbouring countries as it is here, and if a significant generation problem arose, there could be a shortage of electricity. The completion of OL3 will alleviate this situation.

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Fingrid Oyj
Läkkisepäntie 21
00620 Helsinki
Tel. 030 395 5267

Fingrid is Finland’s transmission system operator. We secure reliable electricity cost effectively for our customers and society, and shape the clean, market-oriented power system of the future.