Coal, Nuclear, Retrofits & Upgrades

Duke schedules $510M overhaul

Issue 5 and Volume 100.

Duke schedules $510M overhaul

Duke Power Co. is making plans to replace eight steam generators at its McGuire Nuclear Station at Lake Norman, part of a $510 million overhaul which utility officials say will not affect rates. The installations will begin in January 1997 with four new generators at McGuire Unit 1 and will require approximately 1,000 additional workers, most of whom will be transferred from other company divisions. The work on each of the two units will occur during scheduled refueling outages. The units will be down for approximately 100 days, undergoing both refueling and replacement work. Replacement takes about 60 days.

Generator replacement at Unit 2 will begin in July 1997 and run through mid-October. This summer, Duke will replace four Westinghouse generators in Unit 1 of its Catawba Nuclear Station for a cost of $170 million. Catawba Unit 2 generators do not need replacement.

The new steam generators will be made by Babcock & Wilcox of Cambridge, Ontario, Canada. Duke sued Westinghouse in 1990, claiming that the tubes in the generators had cracks in them and that Westinghouse knew about the defects. Westinghouse denied the accusations, claiming Duke operated the generators improperly. Maintenance work on the generators was costing Duke at least $16 million during refueling outages, according to Duke officials. Terms of the out-of-court settlement are sealed by court order. The replaced generators will be stored on the McGuire site.