Five US reactors to uprate by end of February

11 February 2014

Exelon's Braidwood and Byron PWR-based nuclear power plants in Illinois, and DTE Energy's Fermi 2 BWR in Michigan, are all expected to be uprated by about 1.6% by the end of the month, following regulatory approvals on 10 February. All five uprates involve measurement uncertainty recapture through improved feedwater flow monitoring.

Fermi 2 is expected to be uprated by the end of a refuelling outage that began in February. Its capacity would rise to about 1237 MWe (gross), according to NEI magazine's quarterly load factors listings. Braidwood and Byron have twin four-loop Westinghouse PWR reactors whose capacity should rise to 1262 MWe (gross) for Braidwood 1 and Byron 1, and 1230 MWe (gross) for Braidwood 2 and Byron 2.

The uprates were approved by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) on 10 February. The NRC's safety evaluation of the plant's proposed power uprate focuses on several areas, including the nuclear steam supply system, instrumentation and control systems, electrical systems, accident evaluations, radiological consequences, fire protection, operations and training, testing, and technical specification changes.


Photo: The Enrico Fermi Nuclear Generating Station (Credit: David Mitchell, DTE Energy)



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