FORKED RIVER, NJ - Operators at Exelon Nuclear's Oyster Creek Generating Station returned the unit to the electrical grid today, ending a planned maintenance outage that began Wednesday, April 28.
"We safely completed a large amount of work that will ensure the safe, reliable production of electricity throughout the summer," said site vice president Mike Massaro. "I applaud the Oyster Creek team and supplemental staff for their quality performance and commitment to safety."
Operators had shut down the reactor to perform planned maintenance on a feedwater heater. Oyster Creek has three feedwater heaters, which are used to maximize the plant's efficiency by recovering heat that would otherwise be lost. Feedwater heaters are located in the turbine building and are not related to the plant's safety equipment.
Prior to startup Exelon made a courtesy notification to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that a small number of fish were found floating in the plant's outflow canal. In addition to its own environmental staff, the station immediately engaged an independent environmental company to assist with the analysis. In all, 47 fish were found over the two day weekend.
It is unclear at this time if plant operations had any impact on the fish. During the maintenance outage the Oyster Creek Generating Station met all water discharge permit requirements. Canal temperatures have been stable, changing only with natural environmental conditions.
Oyster Creek is a 636-megawatt boiling water reactor capable of providing the carbon-free energy needed for about 600,000 homes. The station is located about 50 miles east of Philadelphia and 75 miles south of New York City.