Millstone reactor getting ready to power back up after repair

Waterford – Dominion is preparing to bring the Unit 2 reactor at Millstone Power Station back to full power today now that tubes in a feedwater heater have been repaired.

Over the weekend, two tubes were found leaking in one of a series of feedwater heaters. The heaters are used to heat up water that is fed back into a steam generator to create steam, which is then piped to a turbine that is turned to generate electricity. The water circulates through the tubes as it is being heated.

Plant operators brought the reactor down to half power Saturday night and today finished plugging the two tubes and strengthening eight adjacent tubes, said Dominion Spokesman Ken Holt.

The high pressure of water coming through the tubes because of the leaks required the fixes on the adjacent tubes, he said.

The water passing through the tubes is not on the radioactive side of reactor and never comes into contact with the reactor, according to Dominion and Neil Sheehan, a spokesman for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

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