Workers on the Bruce A Restart project have successfully completed the installation of 480 new fuel channels in the Unit 2 reactor, marking the completion of a major milestone on the restart project.
The completion of this key milestone means the refurbishment project is approximately 85 per cent complete.
“When we started the refurbishment project we always knew the retube of the reactors would be a major undertaking and represented one of our most significant challenges,” said Duncan Hawthorne, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bruce Power, in a speech to the Empire Club of Canada.
“This is the largest CANDU reactor to have ever been retubed and possibly the most challenging as it sat dormant for well over a decade.”
The Government of Ontario's Long-Term Energy Plan, released last month, calls for the refurbishment of its nuclear fleet including units at the Bruce Power Site. With all eight units operating, the Bruce Power site has the capacity to produce 6,300 megawatts or roughly a quarter of the province’s electricity.
Building on lessons learned from the current refurbishment project and work enhancement made throughout will be critical to any future CANDU refurbishment projects.
“We’ve come a long way and we’ve developed a more robust approach to safely completing this critical refurbishment work,” said John Soini, Vice President of Restart Construction. “When we started fuel channel installation, we were averaging the equivalent of .25 channels per day. By the end we’d set a production record of 9.85 channels in one day and that’s something we believe we can carry over to Unit 1 and future refurbishments.”