"After carefully reviewing the plant's safety systems and specifications, the staff concluded that there were no safety concerns that would preclude license renewal, because the licensee had demonstrated effectively the capability to manage the effects of plant aging," the NRC said in a statement.
Brunswick Plant Unit 2 was licensed originally to operate from 1974 to 2014 and is now authorized to operate through 2034. Unit 1 was licensed to operate from 1976 to 2016 and is now licensed through 2036.
"This is a significant accomplishment that required several years of engineering analysis and environmental studies by the company and then nearly two years of examination and inspections by the NRC," said Brunswick Plant Vice President Jim Scarola in a statement. "The successful renewal of the Brunswick Plant operating licenses is also an excellent tribute to the many hardworking employees who have operated the plant safely and at high levels of performance over the past three decades."
Progress Energy is currently preparing license renewal applications for its Harris Plant in Wake County and Crystal River Plant in Florida.
NRC reports relating to the Brunswick renewal can be found at the
NRC's web site
"Progress Energy has invested approximately $265 million since 2001 on a variety of capital improvements that upgraded many plant systems and components at the Brunswick Plant," Scarola said. "In fact, Brunswick Plant employees were recognized recently with the nuclear industry's highest award for completing a five-year 'extended power uprate' program that increased the plant's generating capacity by 244 megawatts. This power uprate project involved replacing many large plant components such as main transformers, cooling systems and high-pressure turbines with more modern and efficient equipment. These upgrades will enhance long-term reliability of the power plant and have increased the output by an amount equivalent to energizing about 150,000 homes."
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