Three US nuclear units still out of service due to Sandy: utilities
Washington (Platts)--31Oct2012/1228 pm EDT/1628 GMT
Three nuclear power units in the northeast US that shut due to Hurricane
Sandy remained down early Wednesday morning, various utilities and the
Nuclear Regulatory Commission said.
The utilities told Platts they could not provide estimates of when the
reactors would return to service.
The reactors are Entergy Nuclear's Indian Point-3 near New York City,
with a gross MWe capacity of 1,080 MW; Constellation Energy Nuclear Group's
Nine Mile Point-1 near Oswego, New York (640 MW); and PSEG Nuclear's Salem-1
in Hancocks Bridge, New Jersey, near Wilmington, Delaware (1,254 MW). All
three shut earlier this week before or during the storm.
Entergy Nuclear is waiting to restart Indian Point-3 until it is
notified by ConEd and the New York Independent System Operator as to when
"the grid can take our power," Entergy spokesman Jim Steets said in an
A feeder transmission line from unit's generator to the grid was
interrupted outside the plant during the storm, causing the generator to shut
automatically late Monday evening, plant spokesman Jerry Nappi said in an
NINE MILE POINT-1
Plant personnel continue maintenance work at Nine Mile Point-1 following
an automatic shutdown Monday evening after an electrical grid disturbance,
plant spokeswoman Jill Lyon said in an email Wednesday.
A lightning arrestor at the unit's switchyard fell onto electrical
components Monday during the storm, which caused the loss of an off-site power
source and the grid disturbance, Lyon said in an email Tuesday.
Lyon said she could not comment on the outage's duration.
There is no estimate of when Salem-1 will return to service, PSEG
Nuclear spokesman Joseph Delmar said in an email Wednesday morning.
Salem-1 shut early Tuesday morning "when four of the station's six
circulating water pumps were no longer available due to weather impacts from
Hurricane Sandy," the company said in a statement that day.
Waves hit the plant's circulating water building, requiring the
shutdown, PSEG Nuclear chairman and CEO Ralph Izzo said during a press
teleconference Wednesday morning. One of five pumps has been repaired, and
the other four are expected to be repaired Wednesday, Izzo said. He did not
say when Salem-1 is expected to return to service.
Salem-2 (1,232 MW) remains shut for a refueling outage that began
October 14, and Hope Creek-1 at the same site (1,240 MW) is operating at 100%
capacity, Delmar said.
Outage work at Salem-2 resumed Wednesday morning with full staffing,
Exelon Nuclear's Limerick-2 near Philadelphia (1,193 MW) was at 30%
early Wednesday morning, and Limerick-1 (1,189 MW) was at 100%, NRC said.
There was no storm damage at the plant, spokesman David Tillman said in an
email Wednesday morning. Operators have begun power ascension at Limerick-2,
Tillman said, but he declined to provide details.
Dominion's Millstone-3 in Waterford, Connecticut (1,206 MW) was
operating at 80% capacity, and Millstone-2 (917 MW) remained shut for a
refueling and maintenance outage that began October 6, NRC said. Operators
are in the process of returning Millstone-3 to full-power operation, plant
spokesman Kenneth Holt said in an email Wednesday morning. Holt said he could
not say when that would take place.
Entergy Nuclear's Vermont Yankee near Brattleboro, Vermont (635 MW) was
operating at 100% Wednesday morning, NRC said. The reactor was operating at
89% Tuesday morning due to the storm, the agency said that day. Power was
reduced at the request of ISO New England, plant spokesman Rob Williams said
in an email Wednesday morning. Williams said he did not know the reason for
the ISO's request.
An alert was ended at 3:52 am local time Wednesday at Exelon Nuclear's
Oyster Creek in Forked River, New Jersey (670 MW), the company said in a
Oyster Creek shut October 22 for a refueling and maintenance outage and
remained shut Wednesday morning.
The alert, the second-lowest of NRC's four categories of emergencies for
nuclear power plants, was issued Monday night as off-site electric power was
lost and water levels rose in the plant's intake structure due to the storm.
"Water levels have returned to normal and offsite power has been
restored," Exelon Nuclear said Wednesday.
For commercial reasons, Exelon Nuclear does not disclose the expected
duration of outages.
--Steven Dolley, firstname.lastname@example.org; Jim Ostroff,
email@example.com; Mary Powers, firstname.lastname@example.org
--Edited by Katharine Fraser, email@example.com
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