Cook Nuclear Unit 2 Refueling Extended for Repairs

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The refueling outage for Cook Nuclear Plant Unit 2 in Bridgman will be extended by two to three weeks for repairs to internal components of the reactor vessel.

The plant, owned and operated by Indiana Michigan Power, a unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), had an initial projected return-to-service date of Nov. 6.

Routine inspections following removal of the fuel assemblies identified damaged bolts from the reactor vessel’s baffle plates. The baffle plates direct water flow through the fuel assemblies in the reactor. Similar bolt failures have occurred and been repaired previously in the industry. There are existing safety analyses and specialized repair tools being used to resolve the issue.

The 18 damaged baffle bolts are grouped on one baffle plate. Those bolts are being removed and analyzed. Determining the root cause of the failure is ongoing. Data and analyses from those 18 bolts will determine final repair plans. In keeping with its conservative operating philosophy, I&M plans to perform all necessary repairs during this refueling outage to ensure the problem is bounded and repairs support long-term reliable operation.

Cook Unit 1 will remain at full power during the repairs, and I&M has sufficient reserve generating capacity to meet the electric demand of its customers.

At full capacity, the 1,030-MW Unit 1 and 1,077-MW Unit 2 combined produce enough electricity for more than one and one half million average homes.

American Electric Power is one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, delivering electricity to more than 5 million customers in 11 states. AEP ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 38,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. AEP also owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a nearly 39,000-mile network that includes more 765-kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined.

AEP’s utility units include Indiana Michigan Power, serving southwest Michigan. AEP’s headquarters are in Columbus, Ohio.

(c) 2010, WWJ Newsradio 950. All rights reserved.

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