U.S. Nuclear Output Rises as Oconee 1 Unit Starts

Tuesday, 18 Jan 2011 12:28 PM

(Adds outage reasons in eighth, 10th and 14th paragraphs. Run {BMAP 30164 } to locate U.S. nuclear plants.)

Jan. 18 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. nuclear-power production rose after Duke Energy started a unit in South Carolina and Energy Future Holdings Corp. switched on a reactor in Texas, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission reported.

Production from U.S. reactors rose by 718 megawatts from Jan. 14 to 95,851 megawatts, or 94 percent of capacity, according to the report today from the NRC and data compiled by Bloomberg. Five of 104 power units were offline.

Duke Energy’s 846-megawatt Oconee 1 reactor is operating at full power after it was switched on yesterday and ramped up to 80 percent of capacity.

The plant is about 30 miles (48 kilometers) west of Greenville, South Carolina. Oconee 2 and 3, which also have capacities of 846 megawatts, are running at full power.

Energy Future Holdings Corp. started its 1,200-megawatt Comanche Peak 1 unit, 66 miles southwest of Dallas, on Jan. 15 and the plant is operating at full power.

Energy Future shut the reactor Jan. 14 to repair an electrical fault related to a transformer and an under-voltage relay, Ashley Barrie, a spokeswoman for the plant, said in e- mailed response to questions.

Another unit at the site, the 1,150-megawatt Comanche Peak 2, was operating at full capacity.

South Carolina Reactor

Scana Corp. shut its 966-megawatt Virgil C. Summer reactor in South Carolina for planned maintenance on a reactor coolant pump, Elwood Hamilton, a plant spokesman, said by telephone. The outage should not last more than a few days, he said.

The plant was operating at 100 percent of capacity yesterday. It is located near Jenkinsville, about 26 miles northwest of Columbia.

Entergy Corp. shut its 989-megawatt River Bend 1 reactor in Louisiana over the weekend for refueling, Mike Bulling, a spokesman for the plant, said by telephone.

The plant was operating at 100 percent of capacity on Jan. 14. It is about 24 miles northwest of Baton Rouge.

Entergy boosted its Palisades reactor on Lake Michigan after an electrical failure caused it to slow Jan. 8.

Cooling Tower Outage

The 778-megawatt unit was operating at full power today after being reduced to 54 percent when a fault in a relay bus knocked out the use of one cooling tower. The plant is located 37 miles west of Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Southern Co. reduced output at its Edwin I. Hatch 1 reactor in Georgia to remove a faulty water recirculation pump from service, Alyson Fuqua, a spokeswoman for the plant, said in an e-mailed response to questions.

The 876-megawatt unit was operating at 41 percent of capacity today, down from full power yesterday when the pump’s speed began changing, Fuqua said. She could not say how long repairs would take.

Another unit at the site, the 883-megawatt Hatch 2, was operating at full power. The plant is about 74 miles west of Savannah.

FirstEnergy Corp. boosted its 893-megawatt Davis-Besse reactor in Ohio.

The plant was operating at 100 percent of capacity today after being shut for planned maintenance Jan. 8. It was restarted and operating at 17 percent of capacity Jan. 14. The plant is 21 miles east of Toledo.

--Editors: Charlotte Porter, Dan Stets

To contact the reporter on this story: Colin McClelland in Toronto at cmcclelland1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net

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