Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Junk Plant Cooper's Bum Meteorological Towers.

Remember Pilgrim's meteorological tower problems (google Popperville, pilgrim and meteorological tower). It stated out like this failing for days in a blizzard. It took a year before the NRC admitted both towers have been acting erratic for years and now both are in dire need of replacement.

The issues here is why the main and backup tower are not working at the same time. Basically not having any tower available occurred for only about a hour...  
Power ReactorEvent Number: 52768
Facility: COOPER
Region: 4 State: NE
Unit: [1] [ ] [ ]
RX Type: [1] GE-4
Notification Date: 05/23/2017
Notification Time: 15:57 [ET]
Event Date: 05/23/2017
Event Time: 08:30 [CDT]
Last Update Date: 05/23/2017
Emergency Class: NON EMERGENCY
10 CFR Section:
50.72(b)(3)(xiii) - LOSS COMM/ASMT/RESPONSE
Person (Organization):

UnitSCRAM CodeRX CRITInitial PWRInitial RX ModeCurrent PWRCurrent RX Mode
1NY100Power Operation100Power Operation
Event Text

"This notification is being made due to a loss of emergency assessment capability in accordance with 10 CFR50.72(b)(3)(xiii). On [May, 23, 2017] at 0830 (CDT), the meteorological tower primary and backup communication equipment failed, which resulted in a loss of meteorological data to the plant. Information technology and communications personnel investigated and restored the primary system to service. Meteorological data to the plant was restored at 0925 on [May 23, 2017].

"The NRC Senior Resident Inspector has been informed."

Our Electric system Is In A Full Scale Severe Economic Depression

‘Gas apocalypse’ looms amid power plant boom
The glut of cheap natural gas from a single, gigantic, shale basin that straddles the Northeast, mid-Atlantic and Midwest has sparked a massive construction boom of power plants. Dozens have been built in the past two years alone.
There’s just one problem: There isn’t nearly enough electricity demand to support all the new capacity. And as wholesale electricity prices plunge, industry experts are anticipating a fire sale of scores of plants in the region. Many, in fact, have already been sold along the PJM Interconnection LLC grid, the nation’s largest, encompassing 13 states from Virginia to Illinois.
“Everything in fossil fuels is for sale,” said Ted Brandt, chief executive officer at Marathon Capital LLC, a mergers-and-acquisitions adviser in Chicago. “People are bleeding.”
Drawing from abundant, cheap and nearby natural gas in the country’s most prolific shale field, the new plants are adding a gigantic amount of power generation — more than 20 gigawatts — to a region that arguably has more than it needs. The new gas-fired plants are also coming online at a time of market turmoil, buffeted by Obama administration efficiency policies that have helped tamp down demand and by the Trump administration’s determination to keep old coal-fired plants going.
Spot wholesale prices at PJM’s benchmark Western hub slumped to an average of $28.79 per megawatt-hour last year, falling by more than half since 2008 as the shale boom took hold. Many players are exiting the market.  Calpine Corp. — the highly leveraged Houston-based independent power producer with a more than $4 billion market value and 17 plants in the PJM grid — is exploring a sale of its facilities. The company has attracted interest from private-equity firms, Bloomberg reported this month. And FirstEnergy Corp. and American Electric Power Co. took more than a combined $11 billion in 2016 charges for plants. They’re exiting production to focus on buying and distributing electricity. Dynegy Inc. has also been reported as a takeover target.
“It’s a gas-driven apocalypse in the power market,” said Toby Shea, a New York-based analyst at Moody’s Investors Service.
As prices slip, some see a buying opportunity. Blackstone Group LP and ArcLight Capital Partners LLC bought four Midwest plants from American Electric for $2.17 billion in September. That implies an average sale price of $417 a kilowatt, a fraction of the $1,000 a kilowatt cost to build a new gas plant.
“It suddenly becomes a buyer’s market if the summer disappoints,” said Paul Pace, who heads KeyCorp’s energy lending team.
Contributing to the glut is the slowdown in coal-plant closures resulting from more favorable policies under the Trump administration. Some of the country’s smartest investors, including Blackstone, are buying these facilities at discounts, betting that a few hot or cold days each year will yield enough money to justify keeping them operating.
Patches of extreme weather are also a motive for the building boom. The polar vortex sidelined a fifth of PJM’s power plants in the game-changing winter of 2014, when frigid weather forced some plants to suspend production. This resulted in a huge, if temporary, spike in electricity rates for consumers. Preventing another such shutdown is a primary focus for PJM: Now, power plants must be both efficient and reliable in extreme weather or face steep penalties.
Finally, advances in efficiency, reducing demand for electricity, are converging with the gas glut to further depress the industry. Everything from the advent of LED light bulbs to Energy Star-certified refrigerators and appliances prompted PJM to slash its long-term growth forecasts to just 0.2 percent a year from 1 percent in 2014. Add in wind and solar, which are providing ever more energy to the grid, and the demand for new power plants looks even shakier.
Given lackluster demand for energy, it’s surprising that power-plant valuations haven’t fallen more, said Ravina Advani, a New York-based managing director at BNP Paribas SA. One reason: Developers continue to attract new investors, including from Japan and Korea. Still, it’s just a matter of time before prices break lower, said Dean Murphy, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based principal at the Brattle Group.
“It’s like the housing market that is oversupplied and it takes longer to move your house,” he said. “Buyers have tons and tons of options.”

...The NEISO electric prices has been in steep decline for the last few years. It really has never translated into lower prices for the ratepayers. The PJM is a huge system. It is a bellwether indicator for electric prices in the nation.

In other words, the system is indicating wholesale electric prices will decline 25% in three years. How much will it decline this year, next year and year two?

This is very very bad news for the nukes and indicates safety is gravely compromised...

Another nuclear plant, Quad Cities in Illinois, also failed to clear PJM's capacity auction. In a written statement, Dominguez said Exelon "remains fully committed to keeping the Quad Cities plant open."

Updated on May 24, 2017 at 8:42 AM Posted on May 24, 2017 at 8:00 AM

PJM Interconnection's annual auction to determine which power plants will best be able to serve customers three years from the auction date shows that coal and nuclear plants continue to have problems competing against gas turbine plants but that the pace of new gas plants entering the market is slowing.(PJM)
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Add another monkey wrench to Ohio's debates about saving nuclear reactors and big coal-fired power plants from the growing fleet of gas turbine plants and wind farms.
PJM Interconnection's annual auction to guarantee there will be enough power plants in business three years from now to provide electricity to customers in Ohio, 12 other states and the District of Columbia has wrapped up with a healthy reserve committed to generate in June 2020.
The auction showed a reserve generating capacity margin of more than 23 percent higher than what PJM projects the demand will be from June 2020 through May 2021.
And perhaps the best news for consumers, the auction closing prices -- what PJM will pay power plants that commit to be operating in three years -- are lower than expected, about 25 percent lower over most of the PJM territory.
"The results show that PJM markets continue to achieve what they were originally intended to accomplish, ensuring reliability at the lowest reasonable cost," said Andrew L. Ott, PJM president and CEO, in a prepared release. 
There are exceptions in parts of the East Coast where demand is high and transmission capability constricted.
The one exception in Ohio is the Greater Cincinnati area served by Duke Energy, where power prices are expected to be significantly higher because there is a chance of plant closings and power imports, said Adam Keech, executive director of PJM market operations, in a news conference.
The auction capacity charges are not a complete guarantee of future prices, however, because they account for only about 10 percent of the final price of power. Fuel prices, competition and unexpected declines or increases in demand also play a role…

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Columbia Nuclear Plant: Trump Just killed His First Nuclear Plant

Ok, I don't know what it is. Its a hybrid of municipal, state and federal ownership. Its way too top heavy and indicates they spend way too much on bureaucracy. Its a political jobs authority.
Energy Northwest (formerly Washington Public Power Supply System) is a United States public power joint operating agency formed by State law in 1957 to produce at-cost power for Northwest utilities. Headquartered in Richland, Washington, the WPPSS became commonly known as "Whoops"[1] due to over-commitment to nuclear power in the 1970s which brought about financial collapse and the second largest municipal bond default[2] in U.S. history. WPPSS was renamed Energy Northwest in November 1998. Agency membership includes 28 public power utilities, including 23 of the State’s 24 public utility districts.
Energy Northwest is governed by two boards: an executive board and a board of directors. The executive board has 11 members: five representatives from the board of directors, three gubernatorial appointees and three public representatives selected by the board of directors. The board of directors includes a representative from each member utility.
The consortium’s nuclear, hydro, wind, and solar projects deliver nearly 1,300 megawatts of electricity to the Northwest power grid. Current power projects include White Bluffs Solar Station, Packwood Lake Hydroelectric Project, Nine Canyon Wind Project, and Columbia Generating Station nuclear power plant.

Ok, ok...Columbia is owned by a private corporation... 

The dams subsidize this nuclear plant. It definitely won't be able to stand up on its own with the cheap hydro power. Who is going to buy the nuke plant? It basically is a extremely isolated nuke plant in the northwest. Then they had a whistleblower recently who was right. The plant is tainted over this to any new owner.

The very same logic would throw off TVA into the private market.
2016 presidential election results: Clinton, Trump and Gary whats-his-name.
1,742,718,  1,221, 747, 160,879
I bet you this is just Trump punishing Washington for not voting for him. The area surrounding TVA is deep in Trump area. Is there a little hypocrisy between selling off BVA versus TVA??? 

Hmmm, would this get liberal or antis votes next election if Trump canned the plant.     

Trump proposes sell-off of most Bonneville Power assets

Why Has Columbia been at 65% For A month And A Half

Originally published 5/2

It just doesn't make sense to "coast down" for this time frame. I doubt the below from the NRC is truthful.   
Update: I talked to the senior resident inspector about this. Man, the Washington state electric system is a beast. The grid is owned by all of us and the DOE (Bonneville Power). Columbia is owned by Northeast Power. Bet you this setup is a artifact of the cold war and nuclear weapons production. The vast proportion of the juice in Washington is produced by their dams. As this time, there is extreme winter melt off. The dams can go full power at this time. Dams electricity is very cheap and Washington electricity is also cheap. They found it very economical to ramp down power from the Columbia nuclear plant and supply all of electricity from the dams in heavy meltdown. I wonder how they compensate Columbia for all the capacity factor it lost? This kind of dispatch(for this long) is very infrequent.

Meet Our New NRC Commissioners

Deep state bureaucrats with no hands on nuclear experience. Southern ideological good old boys.  A continuation of the same.
President Trump announced three nominations Monday evening to keep the nation's nuclear energy watchdog from effectively shutting down on July 1.
Trump announced that he intends to nominate Annie Caputo, a senior Senate environment panel adviser and nuclear engineer, and David Wright, a former state utility regulator from South Carolina, to serve five-year terms on the five-member Nuclear Regulatory Commission. 

Sunday, May 21, 2017

What a South Korean Terrorism Plant Meltdown Would Look Like

It would drastically change the world if a North Korean Submarine launched missile hit a south Korean nuke plant, but did not lead to a meltdown.

It would be a grand North Korean last ditch suicide military strike.    

South Korean nuclear power plant accident would heavily taint western Japan: simulation

The Japan Times


A nuclear accident at a power plant in South Korea could cause wider radiation contamination in western Japan than on its home soil, a study by a South Korean scientist has shown.
If a cooling system fails at the spent-fuel storage pools at the Kori power plant’s No. 3 reactor in Busan, massive amounts of cesium-137 would be released that could potentially reach western Japan, according to a simulation by Jungmin Kang of the Natural Resources Defense Council, a U.S. think tank.
In the worst-case scenario, up to 67,000 sq. km of Japanese soil would be contaminated and 28.3 million people would be forced to evacuate, the study said, though the fallout’s spread would depend on the season.
As for South Korea, an accident at the plant could taint more than half of the nation by contaminating up to 54,000 sq. km, it said.
A total of 818 tons of spent nuclear fuel were stored in pools at the site as of the end of 2015, Kang said. He said an accident could be triggered not only by natural disasters but by terrorism or a missile from North Korea.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Junk Plant Browns Ferry: All Violations Related To Not Following Procedures

May 10, 2017
REPORT 05000259/2017001, 05000260/2017001, AND 05000296/2017001
Cornerstone: Barrier Integrity
• Green. An NRC identified non-cited violation (NCV) of 10 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 50, Appendix B, Criterion XVI, Corrective Action, was identified for the licensee’s inadequate corrective actions to preclude repetition (CAPR) of a significant condition adverse to quality (SCAQ). The licensee’s failure to take appropriate CAPRs for a SCAQ that resulted in an inoperable RCIC containment isolation check valve was a performance deficiency. The licensee entered the condition into their corrective action plan as condition report (CR) 1265552, performed repairs to the valve, and initiated a new root cause analysis. This performance deficiency was more than minor, because it was associated with\ the configuration control attribute of the Barrier Integrity cornerstone and adversely affected the cornerstone objective because the misalignment of the stem to disc for 2-CKV-71-14 resulted in a loss of reliability. The finding screened as Green because the RCIC subsystem remained operable. The finding was not assigned a cross-cutting aspect because the cause was not related to current licensee performance. (Section 1R15)

Cornerstone: Mitigating Systems

• Green. An NRC identified NCV of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B, Criterion VI, Document Control, was identified after maintenance on safety-related 4kv to 480 volt transformers TS1A and TS1B (Unit 1) resulted in the windings tap setting being misconfigured. The licensee’s failure to develop work instructions to change TS1A and TS1B transformer configuration was a performance deficiency. This performance deficiency was more than minor because it impacted the Mitigating Systems cornerstone attribute of configuration control in that the loads supplied by 480 volt shutdown boards 1A and 1B were challenged by this misconfiguration. The finding screened as Green because the electrical system remained operable. The licensee entered the condition into their corrective action plan as CR 1221265 and corrected the tap setting. The finding was not assigned a cross-cutting aspect because the cause was not related to current licensee performance. (Section 4OA3)

Cornerstone: Occupational Radiation Safety
• Green. A self-revealing NCV of Technical Specifications (TS) 5.7.1 was identified for a worker who entered a High Radiation Area (HRA) (Unit 1 reactor building steam tunnel) without proper authorization. This performance deficiency was determined to be greater than minor because it was associated with the Occupational Radiation Safety Cornerstone attribute of Human Performance and adversely affected the cornerstone objective of ensuring adequate protection of worker health and safety from exposure to radiation from radioactive material during routine civilian nuclear reactor operation. The inspectors determined the finding to be of very low safety significance (Green). The licensee entered the issue into their Corrective Action Program (CAP) as CR 1219539 and took immediate
corrective actions including restricting Radiologically Controlled Area (RCA) access for the individuals involved and performing confirmatory surveys of the area. This finding involved the cross-cutting aspect of Human Performance, Teamwork, [H.4], because a significant contributor to this event was poor communication between different work groups (workers entering the reactor building steam tunnel and RP personnel at the control point). [Section 2RS1]

• Green. An inspector-identified NCV of TS 5.4.1 was identified for the licensee’s failure to obtain an air sample while performing work in an area with smearable contamination levels greater than 50,000 disintegrations per minute (DPM) per 100cm2. This performance deficiency was determined to be greater than minor because it was associated with the Occupational Radiation Safety Cornerstone attribute of Human Performance and adversely affected the cornerstone objective of ensuring adequate protection of worker health and safety from exposure to radiation from radioactive material during routine civilian nuclear reactor operation. The inspectors determined the finding to be of very low safety significance (Green). The licensee entered the issue into their CAP (CR 1219539) and, since the work created airborne radioactivity in the area, performed in-vivo monitoring on the affected workers to assess doses from the intake of radioactive material. This finding involved the cross-cutting aspect of Human Performance, Avoid Complacency, [H.12], because, considering the contamination levels present, RP staff underestimated the risk for potential airborne radioactive material in the area. [Section 2RS1]

Watts Bar 1: Suspiciously Slow Startup

Come on, started up on the 9th, but still at 56% power...

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Junk Plant Grand Gulf: Congratulation After More Than two Weeks, They Reached 100%


This guys are going to have another deep down power event before another month is out based on their history.

***The overarching issue here is if you follow the rules and procedure to the letter of the law, the start-up will take four of five time longer than ignoring the rules and procedures. This is the root of all violation, incidents and accident all across the nation. You temporarily make more money by violating the rules and procedures.

I don’t buy it for a second that mass retirement diluted the skills of the employees. Many senior employees won’t transfer deep skills to their underlings because this dilutes their own value to upper management. I just think Entergy nuclear is a shitty company to work for, this the high turnover.

Again, a high population of employees nearing retirement based on first startup, it is what all plants have to go through. It is a common phenomena. All good management plans for this.

We are going to talking about the NRC’s victimology of bad actor plants. This is enabling bad behavior that never ends, with bad actor plants all across the USA.   

Monday, May 08, 2017

Junk Plant Cooper: Six "Slap On The Wrist" Violations Associated with Procedures

The magnitude of it is eye popping. It is a Entergy managed plant. The Risk Perspectives based violation is just not big enough to change behavior at Cooper or any other plant is the USA.

I mean, does the NRC broadly keep a tract of procedure related problems? If it continues to go up, it means the ROP is ineffective...
 May 1, 2017

(fixed bad link) 

Green. The inspectors reviewed a self-revealed, non-cited violation of Technical Specification 5.4.1.a, for the licensee’s failure to implement Maintenance Procedure 7.3.16, “Low Voltage Relay Removal and Installation,” Revision 22, for relay replacement work. Specifically, on October 28, 2016, the licensee failed to evaluate the potential impact of primary containment isolation system relay PCIS-REL-K27 work on shutdown cooling relay PCIS-REL-K30, which was mounted next to K27 and shared a common mounting rail. As a result, the licensee did not identify the potential of losing residual heat removal shutdown cooling, and while installing the K27 relay and snapping it into the mounting rail, workers caused a momentary actuation of relay K30 and a loss of residual heat removal shutdown cooling. Corrective actions to restore compliance included restoration of shutdown cooling, completion of the K27 relay maintenance with shutdown cooling out of service, and an outage risk management procedure change that prohibited work on or near shutdown cooling relays while the system was required to be in service. The licensee entered this deficiency into the corrective action program as Condition Report CR-CNS-2016-07645.
The licensee’s failure to implement Maintenance Procedure 7.3.16, in violation of Technical Specification 5.4.1.a, was a performance deficiency. The performance deficiency was more than minor, and therefore a finding, because it was associated with the equipment performance attribute of the Initiating Events Cornerstone and affected the associated cornerstone objective to limit the likelihood of those events that upset plant stability and challenge critical safety functions during shutdown operations.

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of Technical Specification 5.4.1.a for the licensee’s failure to maintain Emergency Procedure 5.1ASD, “Alternate Shutdown,” Revision 17, for establishing reactor equipment cooling system flow to the high pressure coolant injection system fan coil unit. Specifically, the licensee failed to maintain Emergency Procedure 5.1ASD with adequate instructions to place the reactor equipment cooling system north or south critical loop in service and verify reactor equipment system flow to the high pressure cooling injection system fan coil unit during some control room evacuation scenarios. The immediate corrective actions were to assess operability of the high pressure coolant injection system during control room evacuations that are not related to fire scenarios, and to revise Emergency Procedure 5.1ASD with instructions to open the critical loop supply valves (REC-MOV-711 or REC-MOV-714) in the control room or locally, and verify reactor equipment system flow to the high pressure coolant injection fan coil unit. The licensee entered this deficiency into the corrective action program as Condition Report CR-CNS-2017-01403.

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B, Criterion V, “Instructions, Procedures, and Drawings,” associated with the licensee’s failure to identify a condition adverse to quality associated with Station Procedure, “250 Vdc Electrical System (Div 1),” Revision 14, in accordance with Station Procedure 0-CNS-LI-102, “Corrective Action Process,” Revision 6. Specifically, the licensee failed to identify that Station Procedure contained inadequate instructions to ensure the oncoming charger 1C output voltage was matched with the bus 1A voltage when transferring bus 1A from charger 1A to charger 1C, so that technical specification bus voltage requirements would remain met. This resulted in an unexpected and initially unrecognized decline in voltage on the bus to below the required minimum of 260.4 Vdc.

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of 10 CFR Part 50, Appendix B, Criterion V, “Instructions, Procedures, and Drawings,” associated with the licensee’s failure to identify a condition adverse to quality for Division 1 residual heat removal service water booster pump A, in accordance with Station Procedure 0-CNS-LI-102, “Corrective Action Process,” Revision 6. Specifically, on January 5, 2017, the inspectors identified an oil level lower than normally expected, oil on the pump skid, and an oil droplet formed on the Division 1 residual heat removal service water booster pump A inboard bearing sight glass. The inspectors informed the control room of this condition, and the licensee determined the oil leakage from the pump’s sight glass would have prevented the pump from operating for the required 30 days during a design basis accident. The immediate corrective action was to repair the Division 1 residual heat removal service water booster pump A inboard bearing sight glass, restoring operability of the pump. The licensee entered this deficiency into the corrective action program as Condition Report CR-CNS-2017-00054.
The licensee’s failure to identify a condition adverse to quality for Division 1 residual heat removal service water booster pump A, in violation of Station Procedure 0-CNS-LI-102, was a performance deficiency.

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of 10 CFR 50.55a(g)(4) for the licensee’s failure to use an approved method to disposition an American Society of Mechanical Engineers Code nonconforming condition in the residual heat removal service water system. Specifically, the licensee identified multiple locations with localized pipe thinning below the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Code B31.1 design minimum pipe-wall thickness during an ultrasonic examination but failed to use an approved method to calculate a new acceptable pipe-wall thickness. As a corrective action to restore compliance, the licensee replaced this section of piping on November 1, 2016, during Refueling Outage 29. The licensee entered this issue into the corrective action program as Condition Reports CR-CNS-2016-05558 and CR-CNS-2016-05963.

Green. The inspectors reviewed a self-revealed, non-cited violation of Technical Specification 3.0.4 for the licensee’s failure to install the correct reactor core isolation cooling pressure control valve, RCIC-AOV-PCV23, mechanical stop and verify proper operation of the system prior to entering a mode of applicability for Technical Specification 3.5.3. This condition resulted in RCIC-AOV-PCV23 going fully open during surveillance testing following Refueling Outage 29, causing a pressure transient. This transient caused a failure of the reactor core isolation cooling turbine lube oil cooler gasket, lifting of a pressure relief valve, and a water leak. The licensee immediately shut down the reactor core isolation cooling system and declared it inoperable. The immediate corrective actions were to restore RCIC-AOV-PCV23 from the closed mechanical stop to the required open mechanical stop and to replace the turbine lube oil cooler gasket to restore operability of the system. The licensee entered this deficiency into the corrective action program as Condition Report CR-CNS-2016-08122 and initiated a root cause evaluation to investigate this condition.

Junk Facility Browns Ferry: TVA Doesn't Use Procedures

There are two procedures problems here, one address and one not.

The techs should have had a procedure for this. They setting up lower level employees to failure without having procedures. The "corrective action" procedure wasn't followed in that no procedures set this event up?   

On October 8, 2016, during the performance of preventive maintenance of the transformer winding turns ratio test on the 480V Shutdown Board transformer TS1 B, it was discovered that the transformer was set on the incorrect tap. This would result in lower than minimum required voltages at the electrically downstream buses and equipment during a postulated loss of coolant accident coincident with degraded voltage conditions. Transformers TS1A and TS1 Band their associated 480V shutdown boards were determined to be inoperable since installation prior to Unit 1 restart from an extended outage in 2007. This event is being reported as a condition which was prohibited by the plant's Technical Specifications, a condition that could have prevented the fulfillment of the safety function of structures or systems that
are needed to shut down the reactor and maintain it in a safe shutdown condition, remove residual heat, or mitigate the consequences of an accident, and a condition that resulted in the nuclear plant being in an unanalyzed condition that significantly degrades plant safety.
The cause of this event was the technicians did not use the correct drawings to install the transformers because they were incorrectly classified and listed as "documentation only" drawings. There were no steps in the work order to correctly set the taps. Corrective actions were to re-set the taps for the transformers in accordance with the applicable drawing, validate other similar transformer settings, and revise the classification for the applicable drawing.

 Junk Plant RIver Bend: Following Grand Gulf Into The "Not Following" Procedure Abyss

Basically three "slap on the wrist" procedure violations at River Bend this inspection cycle. How prevalent is bum procedures in River Bend??? It just might be River Bend is maliciously not following procedures to inflate profits or minimize losses?
May 1, 2017

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of Technical Specification 5.4, “Procedures,” for the licensee’s failure to follow station maintenance procedures related to the control of scaffolding in the reactor building. Specifically, the licensee installed scaffolding less than two inches from safety-related containment unit cooler HVR-UC1B without completing an engineering evaluation. The licensee entered this issue into their corrective action program as Condition Report CR-RBS-2016-07963. Corrective actions included removing the scaffolding.

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of Technical Specification 5.4, “Procedures,” for the licensee’s failure to properly pre-plan and perform maintenance on safety-related components in accordance with documented instructions appropriate to the circumstances. Specifically, the licensee used work order instructions that did not contain sufficient detail for the reassembly of SWP-PVY32C, a safety-related valve in the control building ventilation system. As a result, SWP-PVY32C developed a refrigerant leak, and on November 17, 2015, the valve failed. This in turn caused the control building ventilation system to fail, and the high pressure core spray system was consequently declared inoperable. The licensee entered this condition into their corrective action program as Condition Report CR-RBS-2017-02364. Corrective actions included incorporating the torque values into the model work order instructions for future maintenance and reassembly.

Green. The inspectors identified a non-cited violation of Technical Specifications 3.8.4, “DC Sources - Operating,” 3.8.7, “Inverters – Operating,” and 3.8.9, “Distribution Systems – Operating,” for the licensee’s failure to either restore inoperable electrical power subsystems, inverters, and distribution subsystems to operable status within the applicable completion times, or be in Mode 3 in 12 hours and Mode 4 in 36 hours. Specifically, electrical power systems required by the above limiting conditions for operation were inoperable due to the associated division of the control building chilled water system chillers being out of service and therefore unavailable to provide the technical specification support function of attendant cooling that is needed for the associated electrical systems to perform their specified safety functions. As a result of this deficiency, the station reduced the reliability and availability of systems cooled by control building chilled water system chillers by allowing configurations that did not conform to the single failure criterion. The licensee entered this issue into their corrective action program as Condition Report CR-RBS-2015-02525. Corrective actions included entering the appropriate limiting conditions for operation of affected safety-related systems when the non-safety related support system were non-functional.

Junk Plant Grand Gulf: One Of The Most Dangerous Plants In USA.

I thought over the weekend these guys would be at 100% after the weekend. I think these guys got the world record on a slow start-up from a outage to 100% power. They were some 96% power thurs and fri, now they backed down to 85% power. What a cascade of problems these guys have had in the last year.

Basically, inadequate maintenance, extremely poor training of licensed control employees and unclear start-up procedures. I think the whole Entergy fleet has problems with procedures. They should have never allowed these guys to start-up from a four month safety shutdown until all procedures were scrubbed and they get guys in the control room who got the balls to keep their procedures clean of problems, clarity and are comprehensively trained on their procedures...

Fundimentally behind this all is a staff who is under severe management intimidation from a republican domination (management ) and submission (employees) system.

Friday, May 05, 2017

NRC Enforcement Discretions: Not earned leniency

How has the rate of "Enforcement Discretions" changed over time?

Homer Simpson's Hope Creek: Sending A Message To The NRC


Come on, you got the NRC staff lawyers involved in my case already. They are dictating to the NRC inspectors if they can initiate a probe and the depth of it with Hope Creek. I like to put one of them lawyers in the control room to see if they can dance. Better yet, one of Hope Creek's financial pin heads in the control room. Lets see if they can handle a LOOP, scram and numerous broken and degraded safety components in the same event...     


Mike Mulligan

10:36 AM (1 hour ago)
to NRC
We are walking in a Pilgrim style minefield (metaphor). I am getting really good at this. The theme is, I identify a anomaly, failure or degradation with a safety component the NRC can't see or is covering up. The safety component fails unexpectantly to everyone except me. The NRC is perceived as incompetent, then the NRC overcompensates to recapture their public credibility such as Pilgrim. The Pilgrim model...

The is the only way to counteract us, is to massively increase the scrutiny (a preemptive NRC resourced size inspection such as in Arkansas Nuclear One or Pilgrim) of Hope and Salem while they appear in the early stages. Clean out all unaddressed violations the NRC has tolerated for decades...

The public is in a very sour mood now, they ain't going to take any shit from the NRC.

I forgot the official's name I talked to yesterday. I wish he would send me his email address?

"Homer Simpson's Hope Creek: Sending A Message To The NRC"
***I think the NRC's bureaucratic system has a severe case of politically inspired campaign contribution Schizophrenia. You never can trust what you see from them?

***The bureaucratic organizational order and reliability within the NRC and Hope/Salem are disintegrating right before our eyes.


Homer Simpson's Hope Creek: Sending A Message To The NRC

There are systemic management issues here. Most likely we are talking about obsolete nuclear instrumental susceptible to human era, absent communication between the control room and the technician which was a unaddressed long term problem at the plant and a  gave shortage of highly skilled and paid instrumentation employees.

Basically top management believes in the conservative political ideology of employee domination and total submission. There is a big safety issues at this plant. Management isn't following the codes and rules...the NRC is facilitating this destructive behavior. The NRC and top management got a extremely tight lid on information. The information you get from senior management and NRC doesn't get even close to the true conditions of the facility.  

This plant is declining at a precipitous rate...the NRC doesn't have the tools to put a early floor on the conditions of the plant. It has a high probability, the floor, with turning into Arkansas Nuclear One or Pilgrim.

I currently in high level discussions with the NRC on the quickening decline of this huge nuclear facility and a extremely ineffectual regulator.

I wouldn't doubt the tech had secret agreement with management. They gave the tech a boat load money in the cover-up to quit...he took a sword in the chest to protect his buddies, management and the NRC. The whole deal circumvented the ROP!!!

I know the NRC is going to be reading this closely!!!!          

Salem nuclear plants hit a Homer but strike out | Editorial
Updated on May 5, 2017 at 7:43 AM Posted on May 5, 2017 at 7:42 AM
PSEG Nuclear's Artificial Island generating complex in Lower Alloways Creek Township
It's almost impossible to describe what went down in -- and after -- a 2015 incident at the Hope Creek nuclear generating plants without invoking the name "Homer Simpson" from popular culture.
If you've been asleep since 1989, Homer Simpson is a nuclear plant technician/safety inspector in the TV cartoon "The Simpsons." Come to think of it, Homer has often been caught asleep in his control panel chair at the plant in the fictional town of Springfield. When he's not portrayed on the show as lazy, he's portrayed as inept, and frequently trying to cover up his operational mistakes.
We don't know the name of the real-life ex-worker who mistakenly triggered a four-day shutdown at PSEG Nuclear's Lower Alloways Creek Township reactor complex and then, according to a just-finished U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission letter, tried to hide the error. Unless the name IS "Homer Simpson," it's a serious enough breach of policy that re-doing a couple hundred animation cels in Korea couldn't correct it.
A PSEG spokesperson said the technician involved was forced to resign, which is appropriate, given a passage from the NRC letter issued Wednesday about the Sept. 28, 2015, mishap: The worker "made an error in a surveillance test and deliberately tried to correct the error rather than comply with the procedural guidance to stop and inform management."
If PSEG acted appropriately, what about the NRC, the agency charged with keeping our nation's nuclear generating capacity safe?
NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said the agency takes "seriously" this "rare" and potentially dangerous violation of protocol. It sounds tough, until you learn what the NRC DID NOT do. It did not issue any fines or penalties against PSEG, and it will not bar the worker from moving to a job at another nuclear generating plant.
Why not, if the NRC has these tools at its disposal?
From the narrative provided by the NRC and the company, here's the book on this valued technician who won't be prohibited from working at Peach Bottom, Oyster Creek, or any similar installation across the country: First, he entered data into a wrong area. Second, he tried to fix the error without notifying plant officials. Third, according to PSEG Nuclear spokesman Joe Delmar, he "provided testimony that contradicted the cause of the (shutdown)."
In short, do something wrong, cover it up, then lie about it.
As for PSEG itself, its bacon was saved by the fact that it uncovered the error on its own, then reported it promptly to the NRC. Perhaps that doesn't justify a fine. But some sort of penalty might make the company think more about its vetting process for technicians -- especially since the NRC thinks it's OK for Hope Creek to inherit someone else's Homer Simpson that another plant booted out.
Delmar stated that the ex-technician and his actions don't represent the "quality work" performed each day by 1,600 Artificial Island employees. True. We must stress, though, that it took only one "bad apple" to shut down an entire reactor. If this event was so "rare," it requires a stronger NRC response, one that doesn't make it seem so routine.

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Junk and Dead Ender Plant Palisades: More CDRM Cracks and Replacements.

These seals have been a pain in the ass from plant start-up. They continually crack and leak. They always come up with a new miraculous alloy guaranteeing the cracks and leaks will never reappear. They done a costly complete replacement twice in resent years in terms of money and radiation exposure. I will never forget them titanium gonad shields.  
"The plant operated at or near full power during the inspection period until March 17, 2017, when the unit was taken offline for a forced outage to replace a leaking seal on control rod drive (CRD) mechanism 13. On March 23, 2017, the reactor was taken critical and the plant was synchronized to the grid. The reactor achieved approximately 70 percent power on March 27, 2017, where it remained for the remainder of the inspection period, in preparation for the upcoming refueling outage, 1R25"

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Junk Watts Bar Facility: This Is What Capacity Factor Looks Like With Intractable Employee Intimidation By Upper Management

They are just not doing enough or quality, maintenance or replacement of obsolete component. The NRC just doesn't have enough horsepower. Increasing numbers of nuclear plants are completely spinning out of control right now.

I can't wait for the drama with the startup of either Arkansas Nuclear One units. It better than the movies.   
Facility: WATTS BAR
Region: 2 State: TN
Unit: [1] [ ] [ ]
RX Type: [1] W-4-LP,[2] W-4-LP
Notification Date: 05/02/2017
Notification Time: 22:33 [ET]
Event Date: 05/02/2017
Event Time: 19:45 [EDT]
Last Update Date: 05/02/2017
Emergency Class: NON EMERGENCY
10 CFR Section:
50.72(b)(2)(iv)(B) - RPS ACTUATION - CRITICAL
Person (Organization):

UnitSCRAM CodeRX CRITInitial PWRInitial RX ModeCurrent PWRCurrent RX Mode
1M/RY26Power Operation0Hot Standby
Event Text

"On May 2nd, 2017, at 1945 EDT, Watts Bar Nuclear [WBN] Plant Unit 1 reactor was manually tripped due to a failure of the #3 Reactor Coolant Pump normal feeder breaker to close during the planned power transfer to unit power following startup. Concurrent with the reactor trip, the Auxiliary Feedwater system actuated as designed.

"All control and shutdown rods fully inserted. All safety systems responded as designed. The unit is currently stable in Mode 3, with decay heat removal via auxiliary feedwater and main steam dump systems. Unit 1 is in a normal shutdown electrical alignment.

"This reactor trip and system actuation is being reported under 10CFR 50.72(b)(3)(iv)(A) and 10CFR 50.72 (b)(2)(iv)(B).
This below comment must be nuclear industry graveyard humor. These are the guys (unit 2) with a collapse main condenser...   
"There was no effect on WBN Unit 2.

"The NRC Senior Resident [Inspector] has been notified."
Here is two newspaper articles with TVA back peddling about the units 2 main condenser collapse and its terrible capacity factor.
TVA's newest nuclear plant helps keep winter costs down despite recent snags
Federal utility boosts profits during season even with cut in hydroelectric generation, decreased power sales
May 3rd, 2017 by Dave Flessner in Business Around the Region Read Time: 4 mins.
TVA's newest nuclear power plant helped enable the federal utility to keep costs down this winter while a drought cut hydroelectric generation from TVA's power-generating dams.
But a ruptured condenser that broke apart when support beams failed at the Watts Bar Unit 2 reactor on March 23 has forced the $5 billion power plant to cease power production for the past six weeks and could keep the reactor out of service until later this summer, TVA officials said Tuesday.
"These are huge pieces of equipment — three stories tall or more — and we are still assessing the extent of the damages and the best way to make the necessary repairs," TVA President Bill Johnson said Tuesday. "It isn't technically complicated, but there is very little space, so how you do [the fix] is the tricky part. We don't have a fixed schedule yet."
The heat exchanger, or condenser, turns steam generated within the reactor back into water. But it has nothing to do with the nuclear side of the plant.
Tennessee Valley Authority CEO Bill Johnson answers questions during an interview with The Associated Press Tuesday, April 18, 2017, in Nashville, Tenn. The CEO of the biggest public utility in the country says the agency is not going to reopen coal-fired power plants under President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
The condenser equipment could not be checked for reliability during the prolonged construction of Watts Bar Unit 2, which began in 1974 and was completed last year, Johnson said.
Dave Lochbaum, director of the Union of Concerned Scientists Nuclear Safety Project, said similar problems in the internal supports for the condenser developed at the Grand Gulf Nuclear Plant in Mississippi during that plant's initial fuel cycle.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission also cited TVA last year for having a "chilled work environment" at Watts Bar that could stifle employees from voicing concerns. But regulators said in March that the work environment is improving and managers have implemented numerous processes and programs to address any employee concerns.
Or maybe the silence before the 100 yearer?  
"It seems like the worst is behind us, although the all-clear is not quite ready," Lochbaum said.
Making tritium for nuclear bombs
Watts Bar Unit 2 also could be critical to supplying a key component for America's nuclear arsenal. TVA has been irradiating tritium for nuclear weapons at its Unit 1 reactor at Watts Bar since 2003 and is preparing to also make tritium at the newest reactor at Watts Bar for the Department of Energy's military operations.
"We're in a unique position to support the DOE on tritium, a key component in the nation's nuclear component capabilities.," Johnson said. "Supporting the national defense is a key part of our history and this is just the latest in a long series of activities we have supported dating back to before World War II."
As a government-owned utility, TVA is uniquely positioned to use its nuclear power generation to also support nuclear weapons within the terms of international nonproliferation agreements that otherwise could restrict mixing civilian and military nuclear functions.
TVA changes generation mix
The 1,210-megawatt Watts Bar Unit 2 entered commercial operation on Oct. 19, 2016, as the first new nuclear reactor in the country in two decades.
TVA said Tuesday it brought a new 1,025-megawatt combined cycle power plant online last month to replace two coal units at the Paradise Fossil Plant in Kentucky. The new gas-powered facility was completed on time and within its $900 million budget, Johnson said.
TVA also added the River Bend Solar Energy Center in northern Alabama in November and another combined cycle gas-powered facility at the Allen Fossil Plant is expected to be completed in 2018, replacing TVA's 58-year-old coal plant in Memphis.
"TVA's generation fleet continues to become more diversified and this is helping us provide low-cost energy in a reliable and efficient manner," Johnson said. "With the drought conditions we experienced in the first half of the year, which limited power production from our dams, Watts Bar Nuclear Unit 2 played an important role in keeping costs low."
TVA rates lower than 5 years ago
Despite an increase in both TVA's base rates and fuel cost adjustments in the past year, Johnson said TVA rates are still below where they were in 2012, thanks to more than $800 million of cuts in annual operating expenses at TVA and the shift toward cheaper fuel sources, including natural gas and nuclear power.
"TVA's power rates have become more competitive year over year for several years now and we've managed to keep costs down this year despite drier than average conditions in the first half of the year," Johnson said.
Since he joined TVA as CEO in 2013, TVA has cut its staff by nearly 20 percent from 13,000 to about 10,500 today.
TVA said Tuesday its power sales in the winter quarter were down 7 percent, cutting net income by a third from last year. But for the first half of fiscal 2017, TVA still reported net income of $313 million, or $32 million more than the previous year, on sales of more than $5 billion in the 6-month period.
After completing Watts Bar and the new Paradise gas plant, TVA is focusing on finishing the Allen gas plant and spending another $1.1 billion in coal cleanup projects. But the agency's $26 billion of long-term debt should begin to decline this year and fall steadily over the coming decade, TVA Chief Financial Officer John Thomas said.
Them financial pin heads disconnected from the world. Maybe the pressure to reduce TVA's huge governmental debts is causing the problems in the Watts Bar two plant facility. Lets all just make believe they can bring down long term debts to zero in a century. Can you even imagine the stock price if this was a private company? You can clearly see the hypocrisy of the Great Southern extremist ideology here. Indeed, the extremist Republicans in general. Unpayable governmental debt to benefit my political self interest is perfectly ok for me, a grievous sin destroying the nation for all other ideologies, the poor and weak and other political parties. Less productive debt to everyone else means more blow debt for me. Throwing bags of governmental just printed one hundred bills from helicopters is great for my Southern district, but bad for everyone else. You can't even imagine the Roosevelt and later money we spend on the great southern infrastructure project of the 20th century, which drove the back water South to where they are today. It was once what a great nation could do. The forever unpayable long term debt is the Sword of Damocles hanging over TVA system. Believe me, the Southern conservatives and Republican extremist secretly love gigantic government and infinite government monies and debts as long as it serves their own pocket. Yep, our unimaginably large southern nuclear weapons production facilities was a Roosevelt infrastructure and jobs program. Do you remember, Roosevelt felt so sorry for seeing the suffering object and intractable poverty in the South, and especially in Georgia, he decided to fix it. It was what a great man once could do. I once was a southern long haul truck driver. I'd seen the southern infrastructure spectacular with my own eyes!!!    

One only wonders what the real price of TVA's electricity would be if Congress forced them to quickly pay off this debt. If they never allowed TVA to run up the long term debt. It would astronomical. The cheap price of Southern electricity is on the dime of everyone else in the nation!!!          
"Our expectation is that our debt will begin to drop this year," Johnson told financial analysts during an earnings call Tuesday.
TVA has $1 billion of notes up for maturity in July and another $700 million of bonds expiring in December "so I would expect we would be back in the market sometime this year."
Contact Dave Flessner at or at 423-757-6340.
(Platts)TVA says Watts Bar-2 reactor to be offline until summer for repairs
Washington (Platts)--2 May 2017 530 pm EDT/2130 GMT

The Tennessee Valley Authority's 1,210-MW Watts Bar-2 nuclear generating unit will be offline until sometime this summer as a result of a structural failure in the unit's condenser, TVA CEO Bill Johnson said in a conference call with analysts Tuesday.

The reactor, located in Spring City, Tennessee, has been shut since March 23, when it started up from an outage and experienced a condenser vacuum loss. A review showed the condenser waterbox had experienced a structural failure, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission said in a preliminary report.

The condenser is a three-story-high heat exchanger connected to the turbine, a standard part of any generating unit, Johnson said. "We're still assessing the damage and the best way to repair it," he said.

The tight quarters inside the condenser are a challenge and "the logistics are quite tricky," Johnson said.
There is no fixed schedule for the repair work other than to complete it during the summer, he said.

Watts Bar-2 became the newest US nuclear unit in October when it began commercial operations. Construction of Watts Bar-2 began in the 1970s, but was suspended for two decades before TVA decided in 2007 to complete the unit.

The federal power producer said that many of the active plant components, pumps, valves and motors, were reconditioned or replaced during the completion effort.

The adjacent, 1,210-MW Watts Bar-1 reactor was operating at 15% of capacity Tuesday as it exited a refueling and maintenance outage that began March 18. The unit restarted earlier this week, and was at 14% of capacity early Monday, NRC said in its daily reactor status report.

Johnson said TVA's fuel and purchased power expenses were higher during the six months that ended March 31 as a result of lower hydroelectric generation and the need to purchase more power, Johnson said.

electricity generating mix for the six months ending March 31 was 41% nuclear power, 25% coal-fired units, 11% hydroelectric and purchased renewable power, 15% natural gas and 8% purchased non-renewable power, TVA said. That share was an increase from 32% nuclear power in the same period of fiscal 2016, it said.

TVA recorded net income of $211 million in the three months ending March 31, compared with a profit of $318 million in the same period of 2016, it said in a Tuesday filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Its revenue totaled $2.51 billion in the quarter, compared with $2.53 billion in the same period a year earlier.

Expenses for
fuel and purchased power increased this year, TVA said.