Tsuruga Nuclear Power Plant

The Tsuruga Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant located in the town of Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture. It is operated by the Japan Atomic Power Company. The total site area amounts to 5.12 km2 (1,265 acres) with 4.80 km2, or 94% of it, being green area that the company is working to preserve.

The Tsuruga Nuclear Power Plant is a dual site with the decommisioned prototype Fugen Nuclear Power Plant.

The construction of two new nuclear reactors is currently underway.

In March 1981, drainage from unit 1 caused a release of radioactivity. The forty-day cover-up of a spill of 16 tons of radioactive primary cooling water was revealed only in April.

Nuclear Reactors on Site

Unit Type Commission date Electric Power
Tsuruga - 1 BWR March 14, 1970 357 MW
Tsuruga - 2 PWR February 17, 1987 1160 MW
Tsuruga - 3 (under construction) APWR planned July 2017 1538 MW
Tsuruga - 4 (under construction) APWR planned July 2018 1538 MW

Tsuruga Nuclear Power Plant
Country Japan
Construction began November 24, 1966
Commission date March 14, 1970
Operator(s) Japan Atomic Power Company

Reactor information
Reactors operational 357 MW
1160 MW
Reactors planned 2 x 1538 MW

Power generation information
Annual generation 9,096 GW·h
Net generation 234,086 GW·h

Mihama Nuclear Power Plant

The Mihama Nuclear Power Plant is operated by The Kansai Electric Power Company, Inc. and is in the town of Mihama, Fukui Prefecture, about 320 km west of Tokyo. It is on a site that is 520,000 m2 of which 60% is green space.

Reactors on Mihama NPP

Unit Reactor Type Average Electric Output Electric Power Rating Commission date
Mihama - 1 PWR 320 MW 340 MW 28.11.1970
Mihama - 2 PWR 470 MW 500 MW 25.07.1972
Mihama - 3 PWR 780 MW 826 MW 01.12.1976


The Mihama Nuclear Power Plant has been notable beyond most nuclear plants due to the severity of accidents that have happened there, the 2004 steam explosion in particular.

September 2, 1991

Unit 2 steam generator had one tube fully break. This triggered a SCRAM with full activation of the Emergency Core Cooling System. Eventually, a small amount of radiation was released to the outside.

May 17, 2003

Unit 2 steam generators had two holes open simultaneously. There was no radioactive release to the environment.

August 9, 2004

On 9 August 2004, an accident occurred in a building housing turbines for the Mihama 3 reactor. Hot water and steam leaking from a broken pipe killed four workers and resulted in seven others being injured. The accident had been called Japan's worst nuclear power accident before the crisis at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant.

The Mihama 3 is an 826 megawatts electric, 3-loop Westinghouse type pressurized-water reactor (PWR) which has been in service since 1976. The pipe rupture occurred in a 55.9 centimeter (cm) (22 inch) outside diameter pipe in the ‘A’ loop condensate system between the fourth feedwater heater and the deaerator, downstream of an orifice for measuring single-phase water flow. At the time of the secondary piping rupture, 105 workers were preparing for periodic inspections to commence.

A review of plant parameters did not uncover any precursor indicators before the accident nor were there any special operations that could have caused the pipe rupture. An investigation concluded that water quality had been maintained since the commissioning of the plant.

Japan's previous most deadly accident at a nuclear facility took place at a uranium processing plant in Tokaimura, north of Tokyo, on September 30, 1999, when an uncontrolled nuclear chain reaction was triggered after three poorly trained workers mixed Uranium nuclear fuel in a bucket. The resulting release of radiation killed two workers, and exposed one other worker to radiation above legal limits.

The Mihama NPP started back up in January 2007 after making various changes and obtaining permission from Fukui Prefecture and industry regulators.


Another fire occurred in 2006, two workers sustained injuries. There were no fatalities and no release of radioactivity detected, though the ash involved in the fire included some low level radioactive waste.

Mihama Nuclear Power Plant
Country Japan
Locale Mihama, Fukui Prefecture
Status Operational
Construction began February 1, 1967
Commission date November 28, 1970
Operator(s) The Kansai Electric Power Company, Inc.

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 340 MW
1 x 500 MW
1 x 826 MW

Kola Nuclear Power Plant

The Kola Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) also known as Kolsk NPP or Kolskaya NPP, is a nuclear power plant in northern Russia.

The Phase 1 (No. 1 and 2 reactors) at the Kola NPP went online in 1973 and 1974, respectively, and are part of Russia’s first generation of PWR reactors (the VVER 440/230 type). The Phase 2 (No. 2 and 3 reactors) went online in 1981 and 1984 with improved VVER 440/213 type.

Phase 1 reactors were designed to work for 30 years and were originally slated to be shut down in 2003 and 2004. However the shutdown did not happen. Instead, the operational life spans of the reactors were extended, after massive safety upgrade effort that included about 200 safety systems upgrade projects and was financed in part by governments of Norway, Sweden, Finland and USA

Kola Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) produces about half of all Murmansk Oblast's energy. It is a similar type of reactor to Finland's Loviisa Nuclear Power Plant, which conforms to regulatory requirements commonly considered to be the most stringent in the world.

Reactor data

The Kola Nuclear Power Plant has four units:

Unit Reactor type Net
Kola-1 VVER-440/230 411 MW 440 MW 28.12.1973 2018
Kola-2 VVER-440/230 411 MW 440 MW 21.02.1975 2019
Kola-3 VVER-440/213 411 MW 440 MW 03.12.1982 2036
Kola-4 VVER-440/213 411 MW 440 MW 06.12.1984 2014

Campaign to close the station

Several Environment movement groups support media campaign to close Kola NPP citing safety concerns with Phase 1 reactors and alleged violations of Russian law during issue of operating permit extensions. For comparison, relatively closely located Finland's Loviisa Nuclear Power Plant that uses the same reactor type as Kola phase 1 reactors (VVER 440/230 type) operational since 1977, doesn't draw criticism from the same influence groups.

The license for phase 1 reactors five-year operation extensions, granted by the Russian Federation's civilian nuclear regulator Gosatomnadzor (FSETAN’s predecessor), were issued without conducting an obligatory state environmental impact study. Conducting such federal level studies is mandated by the law "On Environmental Impact Studies" in Article 11.

The first extension for the old reactors was issued in summer 2003, almost precisely after former Deputy Minister of Atomic Energy Andrei Malyshev was installed as Gosatomnadzor’s chief. He replaced Yury Vishnevsky at this post. Vishnevsky had been an outspoken critic of the former Ministry of Atomic Energy, now known as the Federal Agency for Atomic energy, or Rosatom.

In April 2005, the Murmansk Regional Prosecutor issued a recommendation to resolve the violations surrounding the reactor life-span extensions and force regulatory bodies and Rosenergoatom, Russian's nuclear power plant operations conglomerate, to carry out the environmental impact studies. But none of this took place.

The Murmansk Prosecutors again ordered the state structures to fulfill the earlier order, but was again unsuccessful. Norway's Nature and Youth and Norway-based Bellona’s "Environment and Rights" magazine first drew the attention of prosecutors to the illegality of prolonging the life-spans of the reactors in 2004.

Rostekhnadzor subsequently issued a license for the fifteen year life extension of Unit 1 in June 2008, after further reviews, inspections and upgrade work.
Kola Nuclear Power Plant
Country Russia
Status Operational
Construction began 1970
Commission date 28 December 1973
Operator(s) Energoatom

Reactor information
Reactors operational 4 x 440 MW

Power generation information
Annual generation 9,846 GW·h
Net generation 275,825 GW·h

Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant

The Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant (NPP) near Dukovany, a village in the Czech Republic.

It was the first NPP in what is now the Czech Republic (the Bohunice Nuclear Power Plant in what is now Slovakia was constructed in 1958) and is situated 30 km from the city of Třebíč, near Dalešice Dam, where the NPP sources its water supply. In 1970 Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union ratified a contract for construction of two NPPs. Actual construction work began four years later. From 1985 to 1987, four power units with pressurized water reactors were commissioned. All four are still in operation.

In 1994, a tourist centre was opened at the site.

Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant is owned and operated by CEZ Group. CEZ recently tendered for new reactor construction, including an option for building a fifth reactor block at Dukovany. The winner of the tender will be declared in 2011.

Technical data

The Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant has four reactors. As of May 2009 CEZ reported turbine generator output (gross capacity) as listed below. Net capacity is a baseline estimate only.

Unit Type Net capacity Gross capacity Initial criticality Grid date
1 VVER 440/V213 >427 MWe 464 MWe Feb 1985 Aug 1985
2 VVER 440/V213 >427 MWe 466 MWe Jan 1986 Sep 1986
3 VVER 440/V213 >427 MWe 502 MWe Oct 1986 May 1987
4 VVER 440/V213 >427 MWe 465 MWe Jun 1987 Dec 1987

In 2005, Unit 3 was upgraded to 456 MWe gross capacity, and the same upgrade was made to Unit 1 and Unit 4 in 2007. Unit 3 was further upgraded in 2009 to 500MWe. In total an extra 240 MWe of capacity has been or will be added before 2013 in a comprehensive program of improvements including steam plant replacement, addition of instrumentation and fuel changes.

Cooling Towers

Dukovany Nuclear Power Station has 8 cooling towers, each 125 metres tall.

Meteorological Tower

West of the facility at 49°5'42.89"N, 16°8'5.44"E, there is a 136 metre tall guyed tower for monitoring air radioactivity.

Power distribution

The powerlines leaving Dukovany Nuclear Power Station are mainly installed on delta type pylons. They run to Slavetice substation situated at 49°6'15" N and 16°7'10" E. At this substation the powerline to Dürnrohr in Austria starts.

Plant owner CEZ plans to install a district heating circuit to supply heat to homes and businesses in Brno. A pipeline over 40 kilometres in length could be installed after regional officials have considered CEZ's environmental impact statement for the project, submitted in July 2010.

Dukovany Nuclear Power Plant
Country Czech Republic
Construction began 1974
Construction cost Kčs 25 billion
Operator(s) CEZ Group

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 464 MW
1 x 466 MW
1 x 502 MW
1 x 465 MW
Reactor type(s) VVER 440

Power generation information
Annual generation 13,396 GW·h
Net generation 279,193 GW·h

Sendai Nuclear Power Plant

The Sendai Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant located in the city of Satsumasendai in the Kagoshima Prefecture. It is owned and operated by the Kyūshū Electric Power Company.

The plant is on a site of 1.45 km2 (358 acres), employs 277 workers, and indirectly employs 790.

The reactors are of the 3-loop M type pressurized water reactor, built by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

Reactors on Site

Name Reactor Type Commission date Gross Power Rating Core Tonnage Price to build
Sendai-1 PWR July 4, 1984 890 MW 72 tons/uranium dioxide 278.7 billion Yen
Sendai-2 PWR November 28, 1985 890 MW 72 tons/uranium dioxide 228.7 billion Yen

Sendai Nuclear Power Plant
Country Japan
Construction began December 15, 1979
Commission date July 4, 1984
Operator(s) Kyūshū Electric Power Company

Reactor information
Reactors operational 2 x 890 MW {gross)
2 x 846 MW {net)

Power generation information
Annual generation 12,901 GW·h
Net generation 276,655 GW·h

Shika Nuclear Power Plant

The Shika Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant located in the town of Shika, Ishikawa, Japan. It is owned and operated by the Hokuriku Electric Power Company. It is on a site that is 1.6 km2 (395 acres).

On June 18, 1999 during an inspection, an emergency control rod insertion was to be performed on Unit 1. One rod was to be inserted into the reactor, however, due to improper following of the procedure, instead of one rod inserting, 3 rods withdrew. For the next 15 minutes, the reactor was in a dangerous criticality state. This event was not revealed until March 15, 2007, since it was covered up in the records. The unit has been shut down since that date.

Immediately after the event was revealed, the president of the Hokuriku Electric Power Company was called to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry office and ordered to shut down the unit 1 reactor. Note that this was not the same president as when the event happened in 1999.

On June 5, 2007 the committee chairman of the Japan Nuclear Safety Commission inspected the control rod housing and drive mechanisms and evaluated that the event was due to cutting corners. He also concluded that the reactor operators at the time were under a lot of pressures from above, and simply punishing the operators would not be an effective deterrent for future accidents. One proposed measure was to have alarms automatically record when they go off so that records can not be altered.

A lower court had ordered the entire plant to be shut down, but that decision was later overturned by Nagoya's high court. The utility put in a request to the Ishikawa prefectural government and the town of Shika for the restart of unit 1. The unit returned to power on May 11, 2009 and resumed commercial operation on May 13.

Reactors on Site

Unit Type Commission date Electric Power Thermal Power Maker
Shika - 1 BWR July 30, 1993 540 MW 1,593 MW Hitachi
Shika - 2 ABWR March 15, 2006 1,358 MW 3,926 MW Hitachi

Shika Nuclear Power Plant
Country Japan
Construction began July 1, 1989
Commission date July 30, 1993
Operator(s) Hokuriku Electric Power Company

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 540 MW
1 x 1358 MW

Power generation information
Annual generation 7,456 GW·h
Net generation 54,864 GW·h

Lemoniz Nuclear Power Plant

Lemoniz Nuclear Power Plant was a nuclear power plant under construction in Lemoniz, Spain in 1983 when the Spanish nuclear power expansion program was cancelled following a change of government. Its two PWRs, each of 900MWe, were almost complete but were never operated.

Conflict concerning the Lemóniz Nuclear Power Plant was one of the major anti-nuclear issues in the 1970s and 1980s in Spain.

The building of the Lemoniz Nuclear Power Plant was opposed by ETA, a terrorist Basque independentist organisation. The first attack on the site took place on 18 December 1977, when an ETA commando unit attacked a Guardia Civil post which was guarding the station. One of the cell members, David Álverez Peña, was injured in the attack and died a month later. On 17 March 1978, ETA planted a bomb in the reactor of the station, causing the death of two workers (Andrés Guerra and Alberto Negro), and wounded another two. The explosion also caused substantial material damage to the facility, which set back construction.

On 3 June 1979, the anti-nuclear activist Gladys del Estal from Donostia died after being hit by a bullet from the police force Guardia Civil during a demonstration in Tudela (Navarra) on the international day of action against nuclear power. Ten days later, on the 13th of June, ETA managed to get another bomb into the works on the facility, this time in the turbine area. The explosion caused the death of another worker, Ángel Baños. Meanwhile, numerous demonstrations, activities and festivals attended by thousands were being held across the southern Basque Country by ecologists and left leaning groups to demand the closure of the station

The escalation of ETA's actions came to a head on 29 January 1981, when they kidnapped the chief engineer of the power station, José María Ryan, from Bilbao. They gave a week for the facility to be demolished and threatened to kill the kidnapped engineer. Although there was a large demonstration in Bilbao for the liberation of the engineer, and after the deadline for demolishing the station had passed, ETA killed Ryan, causing an outcry and the first anti-ETA strike.

However, the killing of Ryan resulted in the de-facto stoppage of works at the site, and the power company Iberduero, owner of the facilities, officially stopped the works while waiting for the Basque Government to explicitly support continuing the development.

Khmelnitskiy Nuclear Power Plant

The Khmelnitskiy Nuclear Power Plant is a nuclear power plant in Netishyn, Khmelnytskyi, Ukraine. The plant is operated by Energoatom. Two VVER-1000 reactors are operational, each generating 1000 MW (net) of electricity. Construction of the first reactor started in 1981 and the first unit was put in operation in late 1987. Construction of the second reactor started in 1983 with plans to finish it in 1991. In 1990, however, construction was stopped as part of a moratorium on new plant construction. Construction was completed only in August 2004 after the moratorium was lifted.

Two reactors are currently under construction. Construction of the third reactor started in September 1985 and the fourth reactor in June 1986. Construction was stopped in 1990 when they were 75% and 28% complete, respectively. An intergovernmental agreement on the resumption of construction was signed between Ukraine and Russia in June 2010. On 10 February 2011, Energoatom and Atomstroyexport signed a contract agreement for the completion of reactors 3 and 4. They should be commissioned in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Feasibility study of reactors 3 and 4 was conducted by Kiev Institute Energoproekt.

Khmelnytskyi Nuclear Power Plant is the start of the 750kV-powerline Widelka-Khmelnytskyi, one of three 750 kV lines running from Ukraine to the European Union.

Khmelnytskyi Nuclear Power Plant
Country Ukraine
Locale Netishyn
Status Operational
Construction began 1981
Commission date 1987
Owner(s) Energoatom

Reactor information
Reactors operational 2000 MW
Reactors under construction 2000 MW
Reactor type(s) PWR
Reactor supplier(s) Atomstryexport
Turbine manufacturer(s) LMZ

Power generation information
Installed capacity 2,000 MW
Maximum capacity 4,000 MW

Almaraz Nuclear Power Plant

The Almaraz nuclear power plant is located in the municipal area of Almaraz (province of Cáceres) at the tail end of the Arrocampo reservoir on the left bank of the river Tajo. It consists of two PWRs of 939 and 894 MWe. The plant operates by means of a nuclear steam supply system made up of a pressurised light water reactor (PWR) supplied by the North American company Westinghouse.
Almaraz Nuclear Power Plant
Country Spain
Construction began 1973
Commission date September 1, 1983
Licence expiration 2021 (Almaraz 1) and 2023 (Almaraz 2)
Owner(s) Iberdrola (53% of both), Endesa, Union Fenosa
Operator(s) CNAT

Reactor information
Reactors operational 2 (total 1,900 MW)

Power generation information
Annual generation 19,692 GW·h
Net generation 325,437 GW·h

Saint Laurent Nuclear Power Plant

The Saint Laurent Nuclear Power Station is located in the commune of Saint-Laurent-Nouan in Loir-et-Cher on the Loire River – 28 km downstream from Blois and 30 km upstream from Orléans.

The site includes two operating pressurized water reactors (each 900MWe), which began operation in 1983. They are cooled by the water of the Loire River.

Two other UNGG reactors used to exist at the site, which were brought into service in 1969 and 1971 and were retired in April 1990 and June 1992.

The site employs approximately 670 regular workers.

Incidents in Saint Laurent Nuclear Power Plant

On October 17, 1969 50 kg of uranium in one of the gas cooled reactors began to melt. This event was classified at 4 on the International Nuclear Event Scale (INES), and is, as of March 2011, the most serious civil nuclear power accident in France.

On March 13, 1980 there was some annealing that occurred in the graphite of one of the reactors, causing a brief heat excursion. This was also classified as 4 on the INES and has been called the worst nuclear accident in France. Much later, the Institute of Marine Biochemistry at the École normale supérieure de Montrouge claimed that they found traces of plutonium in the river which they believed was released in the 1980 or 1969 accident many years ago.

Flood risk

The initial report following the 1999 Blayais Nuclear Power Plant flood, identified the Saint-Laurent plant as being at risk of flooding, and called for its safety measures to be re-examined. Plans to build a flood wall around the site were made but abandoned, it is thought, due the cost.
Saint-Laurent Nuclear Power Plant
Official name Centrale Nucléaire de Saint-Laurent
Country France
Locale Saint-Laurent-Nouan
Status Operational
Construction began 1963
Commission date March 24, 1969 (Saint-Laurent A)
(Saint-Laurent B)
Decommission date 1990 (Saint-Laurent A-1)
1991 (Saint-Laurent A-2)
Operator(s) EDF
Constructor(s) GTM

Reactor information
Reactors operational 2 x 956 MW
Reactors decom. 1 x 390 MW
1 x 450 MW
Reactor type(s) GCR (retired)
Reactor supplier(s) Framatome

Turbine information
Manufacturer(s) Alstom

Power generation information
Installed capacity 1,912 MW
Annual generation 12,918 GW·h
Net generation 363,287 GW·h

Volgodonsk Nuclear Power Plant

Volgodonsk Nuclear Power Plant or Rostov Nuclear Power Plant is a Russian nuclear power plant located on the left bank of the Tsimlyansk reservoir in the lower stream of the Don River near Volgodonsk, Rostov Oblast.

Construction of Rostov reactor No. 1 began in 1977 and operations began in 2001. Construction of reactor No. 2 commenced in 1983 and finished in 2009. In 2009 work on reactor No. 3 was restarted and work on No. 4 is being scheduled as well. Completion of No. 3 is planned for 2013. Units No. 3 and 4 will be an upgraded VVER-1000/320 subtype.

Four units are planned in total.

Unit Reactor type Net
Rostov 1 VVER-1000/320 950 MW 1000 MW December 25, 2001
Rostov 2 VVER-1000/320 950 MW 1000 MW December 19, 2009
Rostov 3 VVER-1000/320 1011 MW 1070 MW (2013)
Rostov 4 VVER-1000/320 1011 MW 1070 MW (2014)

Rostov Nuclear Power Plant
Country Russia
Locale Volgodonsk
Status Operational
Owner(s) Rosenergoatom
Operator(s) Rosenergoatom

Reactor information
Reactors operational 2 x 1000 MW
Reactors under construction 2 x 1070 MW
Reactor type(s) VVER-1000/320

Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant

The Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant (CCNPP) is a nuclear power plant located on the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay near Lusby, Calvert County, Maryland.

The Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant is owned and operated by EDF, has two 2700 megawatt thermal (MWth) Combustion Engineering Generation II, two loop pressurized water reactors. Each generating plant (CCNPP 1&2) produces approximately 850 megawatt electrical (MWe) net or 900 MWe gross. Each plant's electrical load consumes approximately 50 MWe. These are saturated steam plants (non-superheated) and are approximately 33% efficient (ratio of 900 MWe gross/2700 MWth core). Only the exhaust of the single High Pressure Main Turbine is slightly superheated by a two stage reheater before delivering the superheated steam in parallel to the three Low Pressure Turbines. Unit 1 uses a General Electric designed main turbine and generator, while Unit 2 uses a Westinghouse designed main turbine and generator. The heat produced by the reactor is returned to the bay, which operates as a cooling heat-sink for the plant.

Unit 1 went into commercial service in 1975 and Unit 2 in 1977. The total cost of the two units was approximately 766 million USD.

Unit 1 had its two steam generators replaced in 2002 and its reactor vessel closure head replaced in 2006, while unit 2 had its two steam generators replaced in 2003, and its vessel closure head replaced in 2007.

The water around the plant (see lower-right-center of photograph) is a very popular place for anglers. Unit 1 & 2 each takes in bay water (from the fenced-in area) to cool its steam driven turbine condensers plus other bay water cooled primary and secondary system heat exchangers. The bay water is pumped out at a nominal flow rate of 1.2 million gallons per minute (75,000 L/s) per unit (Unit 1 and 2) for each steam turbine condenser. The water is returned to the bay no more than 12 °F (6.7 °C) warmer than the bay water. Unlike many other nuclear power plants, Calvert Cliffs did not have to utilize water cooling towers to return the hot water to its original temperature. As the water comes out very quickly and creates a sort of artificial rip current, it can be a dangerous place to fish. CCNPP 3 will only need about 10% of the bay cooling water volume needed for Unit 1 and 2 combined. The increase in fish and shellfish impingement and entrainment will be less than 3.5% over Unit 1 and 2 existing conditions.]

In February 2009, Calvert Cliffs set a world record for Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs) by operating 692 days non-stop. (US-EPR), Generation III+ In addition, Unit 2's capacity factor in 2008 was a world-record high of 101.37 percent.

November 2010, a deal to transfer Constellation Energy Group's stake in a nuclear development company to its French partner, EDF Group, closed, according to the SEC. A month prior, Constellation agreed to sell its 50 percent stake in Unistar Nuclear Energy to EDF for $140 million, giving EDF sole ownership of the joint venture and its plans to develop a third unit at Calvert Cliffs in Southern Maryland. The deal called for EDF to transfer 3.5 million shares it owns, valued around $110 million, to Constellation and give up its seat on the Constellation board. EDF designee Samuel Minzberg resigned.


The population within 50 miles of Calvert Cliffs was 2,890,702, according to 2010 U.S. Census data analyzed for msnbc.com, a decrease of 2.0 percent in a decade. The 2010 population within 10 miles is 48,798 (increase of 86.4 percent). Cities within 50 miles include Washington, D.C., (45 miles to city center).

2000 renewal of operating license

In 2000, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission extended the license of the plant for 20 additional years, making Calvert Cliffs the first nuclear plant in the United States to receive such an extension. President George W. Bush visited the plant in June 2005, the first time a president had visited a nuclear power plant in nearly two decades.

Proposal to add a third reactor

UniStar Nuclear Energy announced it will probably build a new advanced U.S. Evolutionary Power Reactor (US-EPR) at this site. UniStar Nuclear Energy, a Delaware limited liability company, is jointly owned by Constellation Energy (CEG) and Électricité de France (EdF), a builder and supplier of nuclear power plants in Europe. This proposed single nuclear unit will produce approximately twice the energy of each individual existing plant. See Nuclear Power 2010 Program.

On July 13, 2007, UniStar Nuclear Energy filed a partial application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to review its plans to build a new nuclear power plant, Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant 3 (CCNPP 3) based on the AREVA U.S. Evolutionary Power Reactor (US-EPR), Generation III+, four loop pressurized water reactor. The remainder of the license application was submitted to the NRC in March 2008. The NRC confirmed its acceptance for technical review in June 2008. The CCNPP 3 reactor will be rated at 4590 MW thermal/1710 MW electrical gross. Plant loads will be approximately 110 Mwe, thus the net generation is 1600 MWe. Plant thermal efficiency will be approximately 36% (ratio of 1710 MWe to 4590 MWth). A final decision by Constellation to start construction had been expected by the end of 2009, paving the way for pre-construction activities.

This third reactor will help address the need for more baseload, generating power in the Mid-Atlantic region. The plant will be located south of the existing CCNPP 1&2 and will be set back from the shoreline. Although only a single unit, its power plant footprint will be almost 2 times the size of the twin units CCNPP 1&2. It will have a closed-loop cooling system using a single hybrid mechanical draft cooling tower. It will incorporate plume abatement (no visible water vapor plume). Units 1&2 use an open-cycle heat dissipation system (no cooling towers). Two thirds of the heat produced by the Unit 3 reactor will be released to the atmosphere via the cooling tower. This also is a saturated steam plant with a Main Steam Turbine (one high pressure turbine in tandem with three low pressure turbines) and a Main Generator design similar to Unit 1 & 2. ALSTOM will supply the Main Steam Turbine and Main Generator.

Units 1 and 2 and their support facilities use a well water system for their potable water supply. It consists of five wells that pump water from the second highest aquifer, the Aquia Aquifer, at the minus 400–500 foot below sea level elevation. The State of Maryland limits daily usage for these five wells to 450,000 gallons per day (gpd). Actual daily usage averages 225,000 gpd. Unlike units 1 and 2, Unit 3 will have a desalination plant to produce potable water using reverse osmosis. The desalination plant will produce up to 1,250,000 gallon of potable water per day for Unit 3 and supporting facilities with total dissolved solids (TDS) less than 400 parts per million (ppm). The source for the desalination plant will be the brackish bay water from the makeup supply to the circulating water system. The TDS for the brackish bay water runs 10,000-15,000 ppm. The potable water will be distributed as makeup water for the demineralized water system, miscellaneous potable water services, fire protection and source water for the four ultimate heatsink cooling towers used during normal shutdown and power operation.

On November 13, 2007, UniStar Nuclear Energy filed an application for a certificate of public convenience and necessity with the Maryland Public Service Commission for authority to construct CCNPP 3. This application is being considered in Case Number 9127.

Opponents and supporters of the proposed third reactor at Calvert Cliffs have been involved in a series of public hearings before officials of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. In March 2009, Bill Peil of southern Calvert County asked the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to deny an emissions permit for the reactor due to health and safety concerns he maintains the plant poses to the community. UniStar Nuclear Energy President and CEO George Vanderheyden urged the NRC to approve the air permit application.

In October 2010, Constellation Energy said that it had reached an impasse in negotiations for a federal loan guarantee to build the proposed third nuclear reactor at Calvert Cliffs. The government was seeking a fee of $880 million on a guarantee of about $7.6 billion, to compensate taxpayers for the risk of default. However, Constellation Energy has said that fee would doom the project, “or the economics of any nuclear project, for that matter”.

In April 2011, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) stated that UniStar is not eligible to build a third reactor, as it is not a U.S. owned company since Constellation pulled out of the partnership in 2010. The NRC would continue to process the application, but a license would not be issued until the ownership requirements were met. The reactor is now estimated to cost $9.6 billion.


Scientists at Johns Hopkins University became concerned that the discharge of heated cooling water from the plant would be detrimental to a crucial element of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem, the bay's famed blue crabs. In the late 1960s, litigation borne of Congress's National Environmental Policy Act eventually spawned one of the most celebrated environmental cases in American history, Calvert Cliffs Coordinating Council v. Atomic Energy Commission, forcing the Atomic Agency Commission to consider the environmental impact of building and maintaining such an atomic energy plant.
Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant
Country United States
Locale Calvert County, near Lusby, Maryland
Status Operational
Commission date Unit 1: 1975
Unit 2: 1977
Licence expiration Unit 1: 2034
Unit 2: 2036
Owner(s) Électricité de France
Operator(s) Électricité de France
Architect(s) Bechtel
Constructor(s) Bechtel

Reactor information
Reactor type(s) PWR
Reactor supplier(s) Combustion Engineering

Power station information
Generation units Unit 1: General Electric
Unit 2: Westinghouse

Power generation information
Installed capacity Unit 1: 873 MW
Unit 2: 863
Annual generation Unit 1: 8,104 GW-h
Unit 2: 6,807

Prairie Island Nuclear Power Plant

The Prairie Island Nuclear Power Plant is an electricity-generating facility located in Red Wing, Minnesota along the Mississippi River, adjacent to the Prairie Island Indian Community reservation. The nuclear power plant, which first began operating in 1973, has two nuclear reactors (pressurized water reactors) made by Westinghouse that produce a total 1,076 megawatts of power. They are licensed to operate through 2013 and 2014.

The Prairie Island Nuclear Power Plant is owned by Northern States Power Company (NSP), today a subsidiary of Xcel Energy, and is operated by Xcel Energy and no longer operated by the Nuclear Management Company (NMC).

It is one of two active nuclear facilities in Minnesota and has proven to be the most controversial due to the storage of nuclear waste in large steel casks on-site, an area which is a floodplain of the Mississippi.

In April 2008, Xcel requested that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) renew the licenses of both reactors, extending them for an additional twenty years. The license renewals are not expected until June 2011.

The company has also requested the use of a similar storage system at its Monticello plant, which is currently licensed through 2030.

In May 2006 repair workers at the plant were exposed to very low levels of radiation due to inhalation of radioactive iodine-131 (131I) gas. The gas leaked from the steam generators, which were opened for inspection. 131I gas is normally removed by means of a carbon-based filter; in this case the filter had developed a small leak. The NRC deemed this event to be of very low safety significance and notes that it did not result in any overdose.

The population within 50 miles of Prairie Island was 2,945,237, according to 2010 U.S. Census data analyzed for msnbc.com, an increase of 7.8 percent in a decade. The 2010 population within 10 miles is 27,996 (increase of 4.6 percent). Cities within 50 miles include Minneapolis (39 miles to city center) and St. Paul (32 miles to city center).

NSP had initially intended to send radioactive waste to a storage facility operated by the United States federal government, but no such site is yet open for use (the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository is under construction, but following heavy opposition is no longer considered an option by the Obama Administration). In 1991, the company requested permission from the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to eventually store waste in 48 dry casks on the site. Opposition by environmentalists and the neighboring Prairie Island tribe led the Minnesota Legislature to decrease the number of allowed casks to 17, enough to keep the plant operating through approximately 2003.

Eventually, those casks filled, and Xcel Energy requested that the limit be expanded beyond 17 casks. The legislature granted the request, but required the company to make greater use of renewable energy such as wind power and to pay the local Indian community up to $2.25 million per year to help with evacuation improvements and the acquisition and development of new land and to help pay for a health study and emergency management activities.

Prairie Island Nuclear Power Plant
Country United States
Locale Red Wing, Minnesota
Status Operational
Commission date Unit 1: December 16, 1973
Unit 2: December 21, 1974
Licence expiration Unit 1: August 9, 2013
Unit 2: October 29, 2014
Owner(s) Xcel Energy
Architect(s) Fluor Pioneer

Reactor information
Reactors operational 2 x 548 MW
Reactor type(s) pressurized water reactor

Power generation information
Annual generation 8,914 GW·h

Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant

Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant is an electricity-generating nuclear power plant at Avila Beach in San Luis Obispo County, California. It was built directly over a geological fault line, and is located near a second fault. The plant has two Westinghouse-designed 4-loop pressurized-water nuclear reactors operated by Pacific Gas & Electric. The facility is located on about 750 acres (300 ha) in Avila Beach, California. Together, the twin 1,100 MWe reactors produce about 18,000 GW·h of electricity annually, supplying the electrical needs of more than 2.2 million people, sent along the Path 15 500-kV lines that connect to this plant.

Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant was originally designed to withstand a 6.75 magnitude earthquake from four faults, including the nearby San Andreas and Hosgri faults, but was later upgraded to withstand a 7.5 magnitude quake. It has seismic monitoring and safety systems, designed to shut it down promptly in the event of significant ground motion.

The Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant draws cooling water from the Pacific Ocean, and during heavy storms both units are throttled back by 80 percent to prevent kelp from entering the cooling water intake. The cooling water is used once and not recirculated.

The plant is located in Nuclear Regulatory Commission Region IV.

Unit One

Unit One is a 1,122 MWe pressurized water reactor supplied by Westinghouse. It went online on May 7, 1985 and is licensed to operate through November 2, 2024. In 2006, Unit One generated 9,944,983 MW·h of electricity, at a nominal capacity factor of 101.2 percent.

Unit Two

Unit Two is a 1,118 MWe pressurized water reactor supplied by Westinghouse. It went online on March 3, 1986 and is licensed to operate through August 20, 2025. In 2006, Unit Two generated 8,520,000 MW·h of electricity, at a capacity factor of 88.2 percent.


Pacific Gas & Electric Company went through six years of hearings, referenda and litigation to have the Diablo Canyon plant approved. A principal concern about the plant is whether it can be sufficiently earthquake-proof. The site was deemed safe when construction started in 1968.

However, by the time of the plant's completion in 1973, a seismic fault, the Hosgri fault, had been discovered several miles offshore. This fault had a 7.1 magnitude quake 10 miles offshore on November 4, 1927, and thus was capable of generating forces equivalent to approximately 1/16 of those felt in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. The company updated its plans and added structural supports designed to reinforce stability in case of earthquake. In September 1981, PG&E discovered that a single set of blueprints was used for these structural supports; workers were supposed to have reversed the plans when switching to the second reactor, but did not. According to Charles Perrow, the result of the error was that "many parts were needlessly reinforced, while others, which should have been strengthened, were left untouched." Nonetheless, on March 19, 1982 the Nuclear Regulatory Commission decided not to review its 1978 decision approving the plant's safety, despite these and other design errors.

In response to concern that ground acceleration, or shaking, could cause spillage of submerged fuel rod assemblies which, upon exposure to air, could ignite, PG&E and NRC regulators insist that the foregoing scenario is anticipated and controlled for, and that there is no basis to anticipate spillage. Additional seismic studies are in process, however completion of those studies is not a condition precedent to reissuance of the operating licenses for the two onsite units.

A PG&E request to extend the life of the plant by 20 years has been postponed from April 2011 pending the resolution of the nuclear emergencies in Japan.


The Diablo Canyon Independent Safety Committee (DCISC) was established as a part of a settlement agreement entered into in June 1988 between the Division of Ratepayer Advocates of the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC), the Attorney General for the State of California, and Pacific Gas and Electric Company(“PG&E”).

The DCISC consists of three members, one each appointed by the Governor, the Attorney General and the Chairperson of the California Energy Commission. They serve staggered three-year terms. The committee has no authority to direct PG&E personnel.

Cooling intake event

Starting October 22, 2008, Unit 2 was taken offline for approximately two days due to a rapid influx of jellyfish at the intake.

Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant
Status Operational
Commission date Unit 1: May 7, 1985
Unit 2: March 13, 1986
Licence expiration Unit 1: November 2, 2024
Unit 2: August 20, 2025
Owner(s) Pacific Gas & Electric
Operator(s) Pacific Gas & Electric
Architect(s) Pacific Gas & Electric

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 1118 MW
1 x 1122 MW
Reactor type(s) Pressurized water reactor
Reactor supplier(s) Westinghouse

Power generation information
Annual generation 18,588 GW·h
Net generation 17,091 GW·h

Hope Creek Nuclear Power Plant

Hope Creek Nuclear Power Plant is a thermal nuclear power plant located in Lower Alloways Creek Township, New Jersey on the same site as the two-unit Salem Nuclear Power Plant. The plant is owned and operated by PSEG Nuclear LLC. It has one unit (one reactor), a boiling water reactor (BWR) manufactured by GE. The Hope Creek reactor uses the same "Mark I" containment style found in the Fukushima I nuclear plant and a number of other reactors worldwide, although other aspects of the plant design differ. It has a generating capacity of 1,268 MWe. The plant came online on July 25, 1986, and its license to operate expires April 11, 2026. PSEG has applied for a 20-year license renewal.

Hope Creek Nuclear Power Plant is one of four licensed nuclear power reactors in New Jersey. The others are the two units at the Salem Nuclear Power Plant, and the one unit at Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station. As of January 1, 2005, New Jersey ranked 10th among the 31 states with nuclear capacity for total MWe generated. In 2003, nuclear electricity generated over one half of the electricity in the State.
Hope Creek Nuclear Power Plant
Country United States
Locale Lower Alloways Creek
Status Operational
Construction began 1974–1986
Commission date December 20, 1986
Licence expiration April 11, 2026
Operator(s) PSEG
Architect(s) Bechtel
Constructor(s) Bechtel

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 1059 MW
Reactor type(s) GE-5
Reactor supplier(s) General Electric

Power station information
Generation units 1 GE 25kV

Power generation information
Installed capacity 1059 MW
Annual generation 8,104 GW·h

Wolf Creek Nuclear Power Plant

LinkWolf Creek nuclear power plant located near Burlington, Kansas, occupies 9,818 acres (40 km²) of the total 11,800 acres (48 km²) controlled by the owner. Wolf Creek, dammed to create Coffey County Lake (formerly Wolf Creek Lake), provides not only the name, but cooling water for the reactor.

This Wolf Creek nuclear power plant has one Westinghouse pressurized water reactor which came on line on June 4, 1985. The reactor is rated at 1,170 MW(e).

On October 4, 2006, the operator applied to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for a renewal and extension of the plant's operating license. The NRC granted the renewal on November 20, 2008, extending the license from forty years to sixty.

The Wolf Creek Nuclear Operating Corporation, a Delaware corporation, operates the power plant. The ownership is divided between Kansas Gas & Electric Co. (47%) (now known as Westar Energy), Kansas City Power and Light Company (47%), and Kansas Electric Power Cooperative, Inc. (6%).
Wolf Creek Nuclear Power Plant
Country United States
Locale Hampden Township, Coffey County, near Burlington, Kansas
Status Operational
Commission date September 3, 1985
Licence expiration March 11, 2045
Owner(s) Westar Energy (47%),
Kansas City Power and Light Company (47%),
Kansas Electric Power Cooperative (6%)
Operator(s) Wolf Creek Nuclear Operating Corp. (WNOC)
Architect(s) Bechtel

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 1,166 MW
Reactor type(s) pressurized water reactor
Reactor supplier(s) Westinghouse

Power generation information
Annual generation 10,369 GW·h

Enrico Fermi Nuclear Power Plant

The Enrico Fermi Nuclear Power Plant located on the shore of Lake Erie near Monroe in Frenchtown Charter Township, Michigan. The plant is operated by the Detroit Edison Company and owned (100 percent) by DTE Energy. It is approximately halfway between Detroit, Michigan and Toledo, Ohio. Two units have been constructed on this site. The first unit's construction started in 1963, and the second unit reached criticality in 1988.

The Enrico Fermi Nuclear Power Plant is named after the Italian nuclear physicist Enrico Fermi, most noted for his work on the development of the first nuclear reactor as well as many other major contributions to nuclear physics. Fermi won the 1938 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on induced radioactivity.

On October 5, 1966 Fermi 1 suffered a partial fuel meltdown, although no radioactive material was released.

On August 8, 2008, John McCain was taken on a 45-minute tour of the plant, becoming the first actively campaigning presidential candidate to visit a nuclear plant.

Enrico Fermi 1

The 94 MWe prototype fast breeder reactor Fermi 1 unit under construction and development at the site from 1957 to 1972. On October 5, 1966 Fermi 1 suffered a partial fuel meltdown. According to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, there was no abnormal radiation release to the environment.

The main cause of the temperature increase was a blockage in one of the spigots that allowed the flow of cooled liquid sodium into the reactor. The blockage caused an insufficient amount of coolant to enter; this was not noticed by the operators until the core temperature alarms sounded. Several fuel rod subassemblies reached high temperatures of around 700 °F (370 °C) (with an expected range near 580 °F, 304 °C), causing them to melt.

Following an extended shutdown that involved fuel replacement, repairs to vessel, and cleanup, Fermi 1 continued to operate intermittently until September 22, 1972, but was never again able to reach a fully operational state. It was officially decommissioned December 31, 1975. It is currently in SAFSTOR with a gradual "final" decommissioning in progress. There is some debate about whether the details of the accident as written in the book Fermi-1 New Age for Nuclear Power and published by the American Nuclear Society in 1979 are completely accurate. Several of the claims in the ANS's account are contradicted by certain parts of We Almost Lost Detroit, a book written by local Detroit newsman John Grant Fuller (subtitled "This Is Not A Novel").

Enrico Fermi 2

Fermi 2 is a 1,098 net MWe General Electric boiling water reactor owned by DTE Energy and operated by subsidiary Detroit Edison. It was opened in January 1988 and is currently in operation.

On June 6, 2010 a weak tornado touched down and damaged the Fermi 2 generator building and forced an automatic shutdown leaving over 30,000 people without power in the area. The plant is connected to two single-circuit 345 kV Transmission Lines and 3 120 kV lines. They are operated and maintained by ITC Transmission.

Enrico Fermi 3

In September 2008, Detroit Edison filed an application with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for a Combined Construction and Operating License (COL) for a third reactor. The new unit is supposed to be built on the same site, slightly to the southwest of Fermi 2. The reactor design selected is the 1,520 MWe GE-designed passive Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactor (ESBWR). Review of the 17,000-page application could take four years, after which construction could take six years. The cost is estimated at as much as 10 billion dollars. CEO Anthony Earley said that DTE's analysis "so far shows that nuclear power will, over the long term, be the most cost-effective baseload option for our customers, ... We expect nuclear to remain the low-cost option, but we will continue to evaluate nuclear against other resources and will commit to proceeding with construction only at the right time and at the right cost".

In March 2009, a coalition of citizen groups asked federal regulators to reject plans for Fermi 3, contending that it would pose a range of threats to public health and the environment. The groups have filed 14 contentions with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, claiming that a new plant would pose "radioactive, toxic and thermal impacts on Lake Erie's vulnerable western basin."

This proposed plant should not be confused with the original Fermi 3 project which was to be a companion unit identical to Fermi 2. The original Fermi 3 was ordered in 1972 and cancelled in 1974.

Enrico Fermi Nuclear Generating Station
Country United States
Locale Frenchtown Charter Township, Michigan
Status Operational
Commission date Unit 1: 1957
Unit 2: January 23, 1988
Licence expiration Unit 2: March 3, 2025
Decommission date Unit 1: September 22, 1972
Owner(s) DTE Energy
Operator(s) Detroit Edison
Architect(s) Unit 2: Sargent & Lundy

Reactor information
Reactors operational 1 x 1,122 MW (Unit 2)
Reactors planned 1 x 1,520 MW (2000s Unit 3)
Reactors decom. 1 x 94 MW (Unit 1)
Reactors cancelled 1 x 1,122 MW (1970s Unit 3)
Reactor type(s) BWR (Unit 2)
Reactor supplier(s) General Electric (Unit 2)

Power generation information
Annual generation 8,314 GW·h