Cruas Nuclear Power Plant

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Cruas Nuclear Power Plant
Centrale de Cruas.jpg
Cruas Nuclear Power Plant
Cruas Nuclear Power Plant is located in France
Cruas Nuclear Power Plant
Location of Cruas Nuclear Power Plant
Official name Centrale Nucléaire de Cruas
Country France
Location Cruas and Meysse, Ardèche
Coordinates 44°37′59″N 4°45′24″E / 44.63306°N 4.75667°E / 44.63306; 4.75667Coordinates: 44°37′59″N 4°45′24″E / 44.63306°N 4.75667°E / 44.63306; 4.75667
Status Operational
Construction began 1978
Commission date April 29, 1983 (April 29, 1983)
Operator(s) EDF
Nuclear power station
Reactor type PWR
Reactor supplier Framatome
Power generation
Units operational 4 x 956 MW
Make and model Alstom
Nameplate capacity 3824 MW
Capacity factor 69.4%
Annual net output 23,241 GW·h

The Cruas Nuclear Power Station is a nuclear power plant located in Cruas and Meysse communes, Ardèche next to the Rhône River in France. The site is 35 km north of Tricastin Nuclear Power Center and near the town of Montélimar.

The site contains 4 pressurized water reactors of 900 MW each, totaling 3600 MW total. The construction began in 1978, the reactors were built between 1983 and 1984.

The power station accounts for 4 to 5% of the electric energy production in France, and 40% of the annual usage by the Rhone-Alps area. The site employs about 1,200 workers and has an area of 148 hectares. Cooling water comes from the Rhône river.


On 1 December 2009 reactor 4 was shut down after vegetation blocked the intake of the cooling system. The nuclear safety authority Autorité de sûreté nucléaire (ASN) classified the incident as level 2 on the International Nuclear Event Scale.[1][2][3]

On December 5, 2011, two anti-nuclear campaigners breached the perimeter of the Cruas Plant, escaping detection for more than 14 hours, while posting videos of their sit-in on the internet.[4]


Cooling tower mural on right. Art by Jean-Marie Pierret

In 1991 it was decided by the owners of the plant to carry out a Mural project on the cooling towers focusing on the topic of ecology. Author of the mural on the Tignes Dam, Jean-Marie Pierret was selected to design the painting, 9 mountaineers helped to actually paint the structure. The painting reflects the basics of Water and Air and is titled Aquarius, and was inaugurated in 2005. It took 8,000 working hours and 4,000 liters of paint to complete the project.


  1. ^ "Emergency at French nuclear power plant". Radio France Internationale. 2009-12-02. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  2. ^ "Centrale nucléaire de Cruas arrêt à titre préventid de l'unité de procduction n°4" (PDF) (in French). Electricité de France. 2009-12-02. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  3. ^ Evangelia Petit (2009-12-02). "Levée du plan d'urgence interne à la centrale nucléaire de Cruas (Ardèche)" (in French). Autorité de Sûreté Nucléaire. Archived from the original on 2009-12-05. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  4. ^ Tara Patel (December 16, 2011). "Breaches at N-plants heighten France's debate over reactors". Seattle Times.