Watch blasts turn nuclear cooling towers to dust in seconds

The two cooling towers of the Philippsburg nuclear power plant that dominated the skyline of Germany’s Karlsruhe district for 41 years were reduced to dust in seconds yesterday by controlled explosions.

Energy company EnBW kept the timing of the 6.05am spectacle a secret so as to avoid a large crowd gathering.

Multiple blasts ripped through the bases of the towers, causing one, then the other, to crumple in on themselves.

  • See blasts rip through the towers close up:


The plant took nine years to build, and was commissioned in May 1979 but, inside a minute, the towers – the highest structures in that part of the Rhine valley plain – had gone.

The two reactors at Philippsburg were shut down in December 2019.

  • Watch the towers disappear from the air:


EnBW said a DC substation will be built where the towers used to stand to move electricity around the region.

Philippsburg is a "setting for the energy transition", the company added.

The towers dominated the skyline of Germany’s Karlsruhe district for 41 years ( BY 3.0 DE)

As nuclear power is phased out, the grid feed-in of electricity from renewable energies is being prepared, with power transported from the north of Germany to the south.

Top image: EnBW’s still captured the moment of the first blast (EnBW)

Story for GCR? Get in touch via email: [email protected]

Latest articles in News