Watts Bar shuts down nuclear reactor for scheduled maintenance

Local News

SPRING CITY, Tenn. (WATE) – One of two nuclear reactors at the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Watts Bar Nuclear Plant is offline and undergoing a scheduled refueling and maintenance.

Unit 2’s outage began this past weekend after generating nearly 14.2 billion kilowatt hours of energy. No power outages are expected as a result of the maintenance.

More than 10,800 work orders are planned, including loading new fuel assemblies, performing inspections of reactor components, maintenance of plant equipment and installing unit enhancements.

“Generating low-cost, carbon-free electricity is made possible by carefully planning and executing refueling and maintenance outages to ensure reliable energy is delivered to the people and businesses we serve,” Tony Williams, Watts Bar site vice president, said.

Recognizing the unique challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, Watts Bar is taking actions to help protect the health and well-being of employees and supplemental workers, including required health screenings prior to plant entry each day.

“We have a highly skilled workforce that understood the importance of safe behaviors at a nuclear site even before we added health protection measures for COVID-19,” Williams said. “Their commitment to following additional health guidelines allowed us to safely complete the Unit 1 refueling outage this spring, and we truly appreciate their continued focus on health and safety as we begin this fall outage.”

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