BIRMINGHAM, Ala., Oct. 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- On Saturday, Oct. 1, Unit 1 of the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant began a planned refueling and maintenance outage. In addition to refueling the reactor and performing regular maintenance and testing, workers will make upgrades to plant systems and components to enhance efficiency and reliability.
"The key to a safe and successful outage is our outstanding employees and supporting partners," said Site Vice President Cheryl Gayheart. "I am proud of the preparations we have made, and our entire team is ready to accomplish this refueling outage safely using our expertise and teamwork."
Plant Farley's operators were making final preparations to begin the outage when the unit automatically shut down due to a malfunction of a main steam isolation valve. The safety system operated as designed, the plant was stable and the team established shut down conditions in support of the outage.
Each unit at Plant Farley requires new fuel every 18 months. The most recent refueling outage for Unit 1 was completed in the spring of 2015.
Employees from across the Southern Nuclear fleet are assisting Farley's staff of nearly 900 in the refueling effort. More than 800 additional alliance partners and vendors are on site performing specialized tasks. This supplemental workforce provides economic stimulus to surrounding communities during the planning stages and throughout the outage.
Farley Unit 2 continues to generate electricity while Unit 1 is offline and refueling.
About Southern Nuclear:
Southern Nuclear, a subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), is a leader among the nation's nuclear energy facility operators and an innovator in advanced nuclear technologies. Southern Nuclear is an essential part of Southern Company's energy portfolio, and its importance will continue to grow as America transitions to a low-carbon energy future. While the company produces clean, safe and reliable nuclear energy, it's also an economic engine powered by quality jobs and community service. Southern Nuclear operates a total of six units for Alabama Power and Georgia Power at the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant near Dothan, Ala.; the Edwin I. Hatch Nuclear Plant near Baxley, Ga.; and the Alvin W. Vogtle Electric Generating Plant near Waynesboro, Ga. Southern Nuclear is the licensee of two new nuclear units currently under construction at Plant Vogtle that are among the first nuclear units being constructed in the United States in more than 30 years. Southern Nuclear has received numerous accolades in 2016 for leadership in the advancement of nuclear energy including the Special Achievement Award by the United States Nuclear Infrastructure Council and the Presidential Citation by the American Nuclear Society. Southern Nuclear also received two of the Nuclear Energy Institute's Top Innovative Practice awards and a special recognition for achieving excellence in research and performance. Southern Nuclear's Plant Hatch received the ANS Operations & Power Division's Utility Achievement Award for plant improvements that resulted in a record-setting refueling outage duration. The company's headquarters is in Birmingham, Ala.
Twitter: @SouthernNuclear; Facebook: facebook.com/southernnuclear; www.southerncompany.com/southernnuclear
About Southern Company:
With more than 4.5 million customers and approximately 46,000 megawatts of generating capacity, Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is the premier energy company serving the Southeast through its subsidiaries. A leading U.S. producer of clean, safe, reliable and affordable electricity, Southern Company owns electric utilities in four states and a growing competitive generation company, as well as fiber optics and wireless communications. Southern Company brands are known for excellent customer service, high reliability and affordable prices that are below the national average. Through an industry-leading commitment to innovation, Southern Company and its subsidiaries are inventing America's energy future by developing the full portfolio of energy resources, including nuclear, 21st century coal, natural gas, renewables and energy efficiency, and creating new products and services for the benefit of customers. Southern Company has been named by the U.S. Department of Defense and G.I. Jobs magazine as a top military employer, listed by Black Enterprise magazine as one of the 40 Best Companies for Diversity and designated a 2014 Top Employer for Hispanics by Hispanic Network. The company earned the 2014 National Award of Nuclear Science and History from the National Atomic Museum Foundation for its leadership and commitment to nuclear development, and is continually ranked among the top utilities in Fortune's annual World's Most Admired Electric and Gas Utility rankings. Visit our website at www.southerncompany.com
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SOURCE Southern Nuclear