On March 29 at 6:56 am CT, operators at the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant safely took Unit 1 offline for a planned refueling and maintenance outage, said Southern Nuclear in a March 30 statement.
Each unit at Farley requires new fuel every 18 months. In addition to refueling the reactor and performing regular maintenance and testing, workers will make upgrades to plant systems and components to enhance efficiency and reliability. Farley Unit 2 continues to safely generate electricity while Unit 1 is offline and refueling.
“The key to a safe and successful outage is our outstanding employees and supporting partners,” said Site Vice President Cheryl Gayheart. “Safety is our number one priority during the outage. I am proud of the preparations we have made, and our entire team is ready to accomplish this refueling outage safely using our expertise and teamwork.”
Employees from across the Southern Nuclear fleet are assisting Farley’s staff of more than 900 in the refueling effort. More than 800 additional workers from Westinghouse, Siemens, Williams and other partners are on site performing specialized tasks. This supplemental workforce provides economic stimulus to surrounding communities during the planning stages and throughout the outage.
Southern Nuclear, a subsidiary of Southern Co. (NYSE: SO), is one of the nation’s leading nuclear energy facility operators. Southern Nuclear operates a total of six units for Alabama Power and Georgia Power at the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant near Dothan, Ala.; the Edwin I. Hatch Nuclear Plant near Baxley, Ga.; and the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant near Waynesboro, Ga. Southern Nuclear is the licensee of two new nuclear units currently under construction at Plant Vogtle, which will be the first nuclear units constructed in the United States in more than 30 years. The company’s headquarters is based in Birmingham, Ala.