Argentina World Nuclear Performance Report 2023

Argentina-nuclear.pngAs of 31 December 2022

Argentina has two nuclear power plants: Atucha, about 100 km northwest of Buenos Aires; and Embalse, about 100 km south of Córdoba. The Atucha plant comprises two Siemens-designed pressurized heavy water reactors (PHWRs), unique to Argentina; and Embalse, a single Candu 6 PHWR unit from Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd (AECL).

A 30-month refurbishment project at Atucha 1. Latin America’s first nuclear power reactor is due to commence in 2024 – when the unit’s current operating licence expires. This would allow Atucha 1 to operate for a further two decades.

In August 2022 construction was completed on a dry fuel storage facility at the plant, which will store the used fuel assemblies from Atucha 1 in preparation for its refurbishment. Work on a second dry storage facility at the site is expected to commence in 2023.

Atucha 2, which started up in 2014, has been offline since October 2022, when a routine inspection revealed that one of the four internal supports of the reactor had become detached. Repairs began in June 2023 and were expected to take two months to complete.

Construction of the CAREM25 prototype SMR – also at the Atucha site – began in early 2014 but has been suspended several times. In October 2022 the country’s National Atomic Energy Commission (CNEA) said that civil construction works on the reactor were expected to be finished by 2024, with initial criticality by the end of 2027.

Figure Ar1. Annual electricity output (TWh) and age of reactors (years) at time of generation


Figure Ar2. Capacity factor of reactors in Argentina


Figure Ar3. Emissions avoidance through use of nuclear generation in Argentina


WNN Links

30 May 2023

Nucleoelectrica sets out plan for Atucha II repair: World Nuclear News - 30 May 2023