Burke County, GA (WJBF) – Monday, Georgia Power announced the latest milestone in the construction of the expansion of Plant Vogtle near Waynesboro, Georgia with the delivery of the first reactor coolant pump for the project.
The reactor coolant pump arrived via truck from Curtiss-Wright Corporation in Cheswick, Pennsylvania.
The coolant pump is also the first to be delivered to any U.S. AP1000 construction project. The pump weighs 187.5 tons, or 375,000 pounds, and is a critical component of the AP1000 design as it circulates hot primary-circuit water within the reactor. There are four reactor coolant pumps needed for each unit.
Other recent progress at the Vogtle site includes the safe placement of six new shield building panels for Unit 3, bringing the total number of panels installed to date to 20. The shield building, which encapsulates the Unit 3 containment vessel, is comprised of more than 160 individual steel panels. The reinforced individual panels can weigh 10 tons or more and be filled with concrete. Once fully assembled, the shield building will provide structural support of the containment cooling water supply and protect the containment vessel, which houses the reactor vessel and associated equipment.
The Vogtle project is the state’s largest job-producing construction project with more than 5,000 construction workers onsite and 800 permanent jobs once the new units begin operation. Once all four units are online, Plant Vogtle is expected to generate more electricity than any other U.S. nuclear facility, enough to power more than one million homes and businesses.
The projected overall peak rate impact of the Vogtle nuclear expansion continues to be significantly less than when the project was originally certified due to lower financing rates, other benefits the company has proactively pursued and the fuel savings of nuclear. The company projects that, even with the new costs and schedule forecast, the peak rate impact will be approximately 6 to 7 percent – which is nearly half of the original rate impact forecast. Of this, approximately 4.5 percent is already in rates. Once the new units come online, they are expected to put downward pressure on rates and deliver long-term savings for Georgia customers.