Bruce Power says refurbished Unit 6 back online

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Bruce Power’s Unit 6 nuclear reactor was reconnected to Ontario’s electricity grid after more than three years of refurbishment, the company announced Sept. 8.

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The Major Component Replacement outage began in January 2020 and was completed ahead of schedule, the company said in a news release. By replacing and upgrading key equipment, the reactor’s life will be extended for 40 years.

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“Hundreds of companies and thousands of tradespeople replaced 480 fuel channels, 960 feeders and eight massive steam generators, in addition to thousands of other modifications and tasks, including loading 5,760 new fuel bundles into the core.”

It is the first unit to be returned to service as part of Bruce Power’s Life-Extension Program, which will see Units 3-8 refurbished over the next decade, extending the units’ operation period to 2064 and beyond, the company said.

The Independent Electricity System Operator projects demand for clean energy will soar, Bruce Power noted.

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“As one of the largest nuclear operators in the world, refurbishing our units is key to providing clean, reliable energy to the people of Ontario well into the future,” Mike Rencheck, Bruce Power’s President and CEO, is quoted saying.

Ontario Power Generation shared “lessons learned and operating experience” with Bruce Power, he said. He thanked all involved in getting the job done.

“Several innovations were realized in Unit 6 that will be carried forward to improve performance and quality in subsequent MCR outages, including tooling and inspection automation and robotics, and advanced modelling and training,” the company said.

Refurbishment of Unit 3 is underway.

“We’re already a world leader in clean energy generation and today’s good news only proves that we have the experts and the Made-in-Ontario supply chain to meet increased electrification needs and power our economic growth,” Ontario Energy Minister Todd Smith was quoted in the release:

Bruce Power said it provides between $9 billion and $12 billion in direct and indirect economic activity in Canada from operations and its Life-Extension Program, creating tens of thousands of jobs and economic development.

Author: Jordan Ross