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Regulator OKs Sendai plant facilities' designs

Nuclear & Energy

Japan's nuclear regulator has approved the designs of all the newly installed facilities for the No.1 and No.2 reactors at the Sendai nuclear power plant.

The approval moves the Sendai nuclear power plant in southwestern Japan one step closer to restart.

Operator Kyushu Electric Power Company had been slow in submitting some of the design documents to the regulator. They include the designs of shared facilities, such as the control room's air conditioning.

On Friday, officials of the regulator said they finally confirmed the quake-resistance for these designs and that all the designs for safety purposes were approved.

The next step is an in-person inspection by officials that leads to the No.1 reactor's restart. The regulator has been inspecting the newly installed facilities for the reactor since March. But it has completed less than 10 percent of about 200 inspection items as of Sunday.

This will set the restart date of the No.1 reactor to late July at the earliest.

Regarding the No.2 reactor, the operator says it plans to restart it in August or shortly afterward. The power company next week plans to submit to the regulator documents asking for an in-person inspection of the reactor.

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