Catawba 1 and 2are pressurized-water reactors (PWRs) operated by the Duke Power Company, each with a capacity to generate 1,129 megawatts (1.1 billion watts) of electricity (MWe). Catawba Nuclear Station is on the north central portion of South Carolina about 6 miles north of Rock Hill, 10.5 miles east-northeast of Charlotte and adjacent to Lake Wylie.
Catawba 1 began commercial operation in 1985, and Catawba 2 in 1986. Catawba 1 is licensed by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to operate until the year 2024, and Catawba 2 until 2026.
Utility Contact InformationDuke Power Company
PO Box 33189
422 South Church Street
Charlotte, NC 28242
Web Site: http://www.dukepower.com/
[The data in the charts below was gathered from government sources by Public Citizen's Critical Mass Energy Project in: Jim Riccio and Lisa Brooks, Nuclear Lemons: An Assessment of America's Worst Commercial Nuclear Power Plants, Fifth Edition, 1996. For a copy of this useful report, contact Public Citizen. "Rank Among US Nuclear Plants" is based on Critical Mass Energy Project's ranking of "nuclear lemons," in which the lowest ranking (1 of 109) is worst and the highest (109 of 109) is best.]
Plant Performance and Economic Data
Capacity Factorrepresents the percentage of a plant's electrical generating capacity that is actually utilized over a given period of time. The lower the capacity factor, the less electricity the plant generated relative to its total generating capacity. The data below is from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).
Catawba 1 Capacity Factor
1993 76.6% 1994 98.9% 1995 88.2% Plant 3-Year Average 87.9% Industry 3-Year Average 75.7% Rank Among US Nuclear Plants 91 of 109
Catawba 2 Capacity Factor
1993 82.5% 1994 77.6% 1995 80.3% Plant 3-Year Average 80.1% Industry 3-Year Average 75.7% Rank Among US Nuclear Plants 57 of 109
Operation and Maintenance (O&M) Costsare routine plant operating expenses, not including nuclear fuel, major repairs, or the capital cost of constructing the plant. They are expressed in mills per kilowatt-hour (mills/kwH)---that is, in units of one-tenth of a cent per kilowatt-hour of electricity produced by the plant over a given period of time. Utilities often aggregate O&M costs for multiple reactors at the same site, because many site O&M costs are shared. The data below is from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
Catawba 1 and 2 O&M Costs
1992-94 Average 15.71 1993-95 Average 16.16 3-Year Average 15.94 Industry 3-Year Average 24.82 Rank Among US Nuclear Plants 89 of 109
Plant Safety Data, detailed below, is based on the operating experience of the reactor to date, using normal, low-enriched uranium (LEU) fuel. Using warhead plutonium in mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel raises a number of additional safety risks, which are detailed in a paper by Dr. Edwin Lyman, scientific director of the Nuclear Control Institute, but not reflected in the data below.
Systematic Assessment of Licensee Performance (SALP)is NRC's grading of nuclear plants on four criteria: operations, maintenance, engineering, and plant support. For each criterion, a plant is ranked 1 ("superior"), 2 ("good"), or 3 ("adequate"). Thus, a lower SALP is a better ranking. The data below are from NRC, and represent plant averages in the four categories.
Catawba 1 and 2 SALP Averages
SALP Average 1.88 Industry SALP Average 1.59 Rank Among US Nuclear Plants 28 of 109
The following table presents other important safety data. Safety System Actuations is the number of times in a given period that a plant activated its emergency core cooling or emergency power. Safety System Failures is the number of occurrences in a given period that conditions or events arose which could prevent the successful function of safety systems. "Scrams" is the number of emergency plant shutdowns in a given period. Violations represents the number of violations of NRC regulations in a given period. Worker Exposure represents the collective exposure of a nuclear plant's workforce in a given period, measured in Rems (a unit of radiation). These data from NRC represent annual averages for a three-year period.
Catawba 1 Safety Data, 1993-1995
Safety Issue Catawba 1 Average Industry Average Rank Among US Nuclear Plants Safety System Actuations 0.0 0.6 84 of 109 Safety System Failures 2.0 2.4 48 of 109 "Scrams" 1.0 1.02 44 of 109 NRC Violations 29.0 25.2 30 of 109 Worker Exposure 168.3 rem 197.8 rem 53 of 109
Catawba 2 Safety Data, 1993-1995
Safety Issue Catawba 2 Average Industry Average Rank Among US Nuclear Plants Safety System Actuations 0.0 0.6 84 of 109 Safety System Failures 2.0 2.4 48 of 109 "Scrams" 2.0 1.02 8 of 109 NRC Violations 29.0 25.2 30 of 109 Worker Exposure 168.3 rem 197.8 rem 53 of 109
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