The Wire

Energy news from Omaha Public Power District


One-of-a-kind refueling outage

September 12, 2016 | Jason Kuiper | flashback, Fort Calhoun Station, history
refueling outage

All eyes in the nuclear industry were on Fort Calhoun Station in the fall of 2006 for an unprecedented refurbishment and refueling outage.

A nuclear plan had never before attempted a project of this size.

To meet regulatory requirements and renew the plant’s operating license, OPPD had to replace many of the plant’s major components. Work included replacing the steam generators, reactor vessel head, pressurizer, low-pressure turbines and main transformer along with refueling.

refueling outageA hole had to be cut through the four-foot-thick containment building to allow access for the equipment. An additional 1,800 contractors assisted the 650 full-time employees to finish the project. The steam generators traveled 12,475 miles from Japan on a path that crossed the Pacific Ocean, Panama Canal, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and finally the Missouri River, where it settled at FCS.

refueling outage

The outage finished five days ahead of schedule and about $34 million under budget.

refueling outage

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About Jason Kuiper

Jason Kuiper joined OPPD as a communications specialist in 2015. He is a former staff writer and reporter at the Omaha World-Herald, where he covered a wide range of topics but spent the majority of his career covering crime. He is a graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha and has also appeared in several true crime documentary shows. In his free time he enjoys cooking, spending time with his wife and three children, and reading crime novels.

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