Entergy Increases U.S. Nuclear Output With Reactor Boosts

U.S. nuclear generation gained as Entergy Corp. increased capacity at two plants in the Northeast.

Production rose 0.1 percent nationwide to 92,515 megawatts, or 91 percent of capacity, rebounding from yesterday’s 10-day low, according to U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission data compiled by Bloomberg. Output was down 1.6 percent from a year ago with eight of 104 plants offline.

Output at the 651-megawatt Vermont Yankee 1 reactor advanced to 97 percent from 84 percent yesterday. The unit, operated by Entergy about five miles (eight kilometers) south Brattleboro, Vermont, generated 631 megawatts early today.

Entergy boosted production at its 685-megawatt Pilgrim 1 reactor, 38 miles southeast of Boston, to 1 percent. The plant shut last week after recirculation pumps stopped operating. The pumps have been restored to service, Rob Williams, a company spokesman based in Brattleboro, said by e-mail today.

“Since then, we have also been doing other offline maintenance activities,” Williams said.

Reactor maintenance shutdowns, usually undertaken in the U.S. spring or fall when energy use is lowest, may increase consumption of natural gas and coal to generate electricity. The average refueling down time was 43 days in 2011, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute.

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