OREANDA-NEWS. February 03, 2017. Switzerland's 1.2GW Leibstadt nuclear plant is still scheduled to return on 15 February, despite the cause of so-called dry-outs at several fuel rods remaining unclear.

Plant operator KKL today said it is awaiting approval from Swiss nuclear safety watchdog Ensi for bringing the reactor back on line in mid-February. The plant has been off line since August.

KKL continues to investigate the cause of the dry-outs, which occur when fuel rods are not completely submerged in water.

Leibstadt will cut available capacity by 120MW when it returns to service because of the problem. The reactor will go off line for scheduled maintenance on 18 September and is expected to return on 7 November. It is not clear yet whether the reactor will be able to return to full capacity following the restart from maintenance, KKL said.

The 365MW Beznau 1 nuclear unit in Switzerland is also off line.