Finland has 4 nuclear reactors: LOVIISA 1 and 2 (PWR-VVER) and OLKILUOTO 1 and 2 (BWR, PWR). One NPP (European Pressurized water) is under construction and is scheduled for 2012 start-up. The operating four reactors generate somewhat less than 30% of the country's electricity.
On 6 May 2010, the Finnish Government made two decisions-in-principle in favour of additional construction of nuclear power. Teollisuuden Voima Oyj’s (TVO) application for constructing a new nuclear power plant unit, OLKILUOTO 4, in Eurajoki, and Fennovoima Oy’s application for constructing a new nuclear power plant in Simo or Pyhäjoki were both approved.
The parliament approved the cabinet’s decision in July 2010, thus the two suppliers will have five years to submit their final construction licences. The government has agreed to TVO’s proposal to store the low and intermediate level operating waste produced by its two existing nuclear power stations, OLKILUOTO 1 and 2, and the power station currently being built, OLKILUOTO 3. A joined company, Posiva Oy was set up some years ago by TVO and Fortum which has submitted an application to build a geological disposal facility for spent nuclear fuel for operations to start after 2020. Fortum operates LOVIISA 1 and 2. Fennovoima wishes to join Posiva, or if this is not possible, it will build its own disposal facility. It must have a waste management programme ready within 6 years of the decision-in-principle for its new NPP.
In January 2010, a TNS Gallup survey commissioned by Finnish Energy Industries (Energiateollisuus, ET) showed that 48% of Finns had a positive view of nuclear power, and only 17% were having a negative view of it. The gap between the two was the widest since polling began 28 years earlier.
NUCLEAR EDUCATION AND TRAINING
The main high education institution within the nuclear scope is the Graduate School in Particle and Nuclear Physics (GRASPANP).
The Lappeeranta University of Technology/Lappeenrannan Teknillinen Yliopisto offers a Nuclear Physics course and several courses in nuclear engineering inside of the Energy Technology Degree. The Energy technology studies at Lappeenranta University of Technology are the most wide-ranging in the field in Finland, including e.g. a one-of-a-kind possibility to study nuclear engineering. Many Finnish professionals in the energy industry including nuclear have obtained their Master’s degree or doctorate from LUT.
The Helsinki University of Technology/Aalto-Yliopiston Teknillinen Korkeakoulu offers a special Advanced Course in Nuclear Engineering, and some others courses like Introduction to Nuclear Engineering/ Introduction to Nuclear Reactors, Laboratory course in energy technologies, Medical Physics II and Radiation physics and safety.
The University of Jyväskylä/Jyväskylän Yliopisto offers three courses more in Applied Nuclear Physics and Nuclear Physics I and II.
The nuclear training in the country is carried out in co-operation by STUK, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, the Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT), Teknillinen Korkeakoulu (TKK), Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT),Utilities, Fortum and TVO, and Posiva Oy. The national nuclear training programme of five weeks has been developed on the basis of nuclear safety training of the IAEA.
In the field of the research there are several universities involved as the Helsinki Institute of Physics/ Fysiikan tutkimuslaitos (HIP), the Department of Applied Physics of the Helsinki University of Techonology/Aalto-Yliopiston Teknillinen Korkeakoulu, the Nuclear Engineering Group of the Lappeeranta University of Technology/Lappeenrannan Teknillinen Yliopisto, the University of Jyväskylä/Jyväskylän Yliopisto (which is involved in the nuclear and accelerator based physics research) and the University of Turku/Turun Yliopisto which has a Department of Medicine specialized in nuclear medicine.
Besides the universities there are other institutions as the Academy of Finland/Suomen Akatemia, Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority Finland/Säteilyturvakeskus(STUK), the Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) as well as the Posiva,Fortum and Teollisuuden Voima Oyj (TVO) companies that are involved in the nuclear scope research.