Superphénix or SPX was a nuclear power station prototype on the Rhône river at Creys-Malville in France, close to the border with Switzerland. Superphénix was a 1,242 MWe fast breeder reactor with the twin goals of reprocessing nuclear fuel from France's line of conventional nuclear reactors, while also being an economical generator of power on its own.
Construction began in 1974 but suffered from a series of cost overruns, delays and enormous public protests. Construction was complete in 1981, but the plant was not connected to the grid until December 1986. In operation, Superphénix demonstrated very poor reliability and had a historical capacity factor less than 7%,. Many of these problems were solved over time, and by 1996 the prototype was reaching its design operational goals.
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