Kyushu Electric Power Company said unit 1 of Japan’s Sendai NPP returned to commercial operation on 10 September following a comprehensive pre-service inspection. A small protest of local residents took place outside the plant gates. The pressurised water reactor (PWR) unit, which began commercial operation in 1984, was restarted on 11 August and reached full capacity on 31 August.

Kyushu Electric on 11 September began loading nuclear fuel into unit 2 (also a 846MWe PWR) after completing a pre-service inspection. It is scheduled to restart in mid-October. Loading of 157 fuel assemblies is expected to take four days.

Kyushu Electric expects its earnings to improve by JPY15bn ($124m) a month when the two units are online, potentially resulting in a profit this business year for the first time in five years.