Dominion planning several nuclear refueling outages in 2012

Dominion Resources (NYSE: D) plans to conduct several regularly-scheduled refueling and maintenance outages at commercial reactors in its nuclear fleet in 2012, a company official confirmed March 19.

The slate of nuclear refueling outages includes plants both in Dominion’s regulated Virginia territory and its out-of-state facilities, a Dominion nuclear spokesperson said in an email reply to a GenerationHub inquiry.

“North Anna 1 entered a refueling outage a week ago Sunday, Surry 1 and Kewaunee will also have refueling outages this spring. Millstone 2 and Surry 2 will conduct refueling activities in the fall,” the spokesperson said.

The dual-unit North Anna station in Central Virginia was near the epicenter of a 5.8 magnitude earthquake last year. Dominion is currently taking a go-slow approach toward potential development of a third nuclear reactor at the site. The Surry complex is also located in Virginia. Millstone is located in Connecticut.

Kewaunee is located in Wisconsin, about 35 miles from Green Bay. Dominion bought Kewaunee in mid-2005. Last spring, Dominion announced that it’s now looking to sell Kewaunee.

Like most of the U.S. nuclear industry these days, Dominion schedules refueling and maintenance outages on its reactors on 18-month cycles. As a rule of thumb most refueling outages take several weeks and involve hundreds of workers. Given nuclear power’s central role in providing baseload energy, refueling outages are typically scheduled during the fall and winter “shoulder” seasons.

On other fronts, Dominion has nearly finished construction of the Virginia City coal-fired power plant in Wise County, Va. It will also start construction of a new combined-cycle natural gas power plant in Warren County, Va., later this year.

Chairman, President and CEO Thomas F. Farrell II will be part of a CEO panel at Energy Central’s upcoming EnergyBiz Leadership Forum in Washington, D.C., this week.

 

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.