Exelon’s Byron 2 Reactor in Illinois Restores Power, NRC Says
The plant, 85 miles (137 kilometers) west of Chicago, where Exelon is based, ended an “unusual event,” the lowest of four federal emergency classification levels, at 8 p.m. local time yesterday, according to a filing to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Diesel generators being used to power the site were switched off, it showed.
Crews replaced a line insulator that failed in the switchyard of the 1,136-megawatt Byron 2 reactor, knocking out offsite power, at 10:18 a.m. on Jan. 30, Paul Dempsey, a company spokesman, said in a telephone interview yesterday.
The plant vented steam containing tritium to relieve pressure in the reactor until 3 a.m. local time yesterday, he said. There was no impact on the safety of employees or the public, he said.
Another unit at the plant, the 1,164-megawatt Byron 1, is operating at full capacity.
Krista Lopykinski, a spokeswoman at the plant, didn’t immediately reply to an e-mail today before regular business hours seeking comment.
Tritium is a naturally occurring radioactive form of hydrogen that is produced in the upper atmosphere and falls to the ground in rain water, according to the NRC. It is also a byproduct of nuclear plants, a weak type of radiation that doesn’t penetrate the skin, the federal agency said.
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