Nuclear plant startup halted due to “mechanical issue”

PLYMOUTH, Mass. (State House News Service) – Shut down since Sept. 6 due to a valve problem, Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station remained offline Wednesday after a “mechanical issue” was identified while preparing to put the main turbine generator in service on Tuesday.

According to a spokesman for Entergy, which owns the Plymouth plant, non-nuclear systems needed for power generation are placed in service during plant startup and the main generator does not connect to the grid until reactor power reaches approximately 20 percent power.

“Yesterday, while preparing to put the main turbine generator in service, a mechanical issue was identified that prevents main turbine operation,” spokesman Patrick O’Brien said in a statement. “Since the issue prevents power generation, the reactor has been shut down until the turbine repairs are completed. We will return the plant to service after repairs have been completed. Information on when we expect to return to 100% power is business sensitive and proprietary, and we are therefore not at liberty to make it public.”

The plant’s latest shutdown commenced on Sept. 6 at 8:27 a.m. “due to unexpected fluctuations in the ‘A’ feedwater regulating valve.”

Related: Pilgrim nuclear plant back online after $70M upgrade

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