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TVA utilizes COVID-19 workforce practices in completing Sequoyah Unit 2 O&M work

Photo courtesy NRC.

The Tennessee Valley Authority has completed refueling and maintenance at its Sequoyah Nuclear Plant Unit 2, about one month after starting the planned outage work.

Sequoyah Unit 2 resumed full power operations Friday, delivering carbon-free electricity to the equivalent of 650,000 homes.

During the nearly five week maintenance outage, crews replaced 80 of Unit 2’s 193 fuel assemblies and performed inspections of all component systems. A number of motors, valves and other parts were upgraded or replaced, according to the TVA release.

“The entire Sequoyah team, supported by our union and contract partners, safely completed over 10,500 work activities during the outage,” said Matt Rasmussen, Sequoyah site vice president. “The work we performed together in this outage puts Unit 2 in the best position to continue to operate safely over the next 18-month cycle. Each of our team members takes great pride in the work they do to ensure the plant continues to provide safe, reliable service to the people and businesses of the Tennessee Valley.”

Additional safe work practices were established to help protect the health and well-being of employees and supplemental workers in light of COVID-19. Sequoyah took multiple and significant steps, including required health screenings prior to plant entry each day, and increased personal protective equipment required for this outage.

This spring, TVA has completed scheduled refueling outages at Browns Ferry Unit 3 and Sequoyah Unit 2. Watts Bar Unit 1 is scheduled to begin a refueling outage this weekend.

Sequoyah Unit 2 is one of seven operational TVA nuclear reactors across the Valley. Collectively, TVA’s nuclear fleet safely and reliably provides nearly 40 percent of all electricity used by nearly 10 million people in the Tennessee Valley.

Located near Soddy-Daisy, Tenn., Sequoyah is the state’s most powerful electricity generation plant and was built in the 1970s along the Chickamauga Lake portion of the Tennessee River. The nearly identical 3,455-MW capacity units 1 and 2 were commissioned in 1981 and 1982, respectively.

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Rod Walton, content director of Power Engineering, will be moderating a free webcast beginning 11 a.m. ET Wednesday, May 13 on doing the things necessary to ensure safety for utility workforces during the COVID-19 era. “Maintaining your Workforce during a Pandemic” will feature ComEd President and COO Terry Donnelly, Entergy COO Paul Hinnenkamp, and Derin Blumh, CTO of Grant County Public Utility District in northwest Washington state. The webcast has no charge to registrants and is sponsored by Beekeeper, Clevest, Travelers Alliance Group and Arcos.